• The Amazon Basin is home to half of the world's tropical forests. These forests are home to an incredible diversity of plant and animal life. From the birds and bees of the forest canopy to the sloths and snakes beneath, the Amazon has a dazzling array of species . . . some of which remain undiscovered.
    Visit our MapMaker Interactive geo-tour to uncover the richness of the Amazon rain forest. Be sure to click on the bookmarks for information on each map, and on markers for media and information on specific species. Use our markers and “save” features to customize the map as your own.
  • 10 Animal Species Endemic to the Amazon Basin
    These animals are only found in the Amazon River or one of its rain forest ecosystems.
      1. Caquetá tití monkey (Western Colombia) (critically endangered)
      2. hoary-throated spinetail bird (Brazil and Guyana) (critically endangered)
      3. pink-throated brilliant hummingbird (Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru) (vulnerable)
      4. fantastic poison frog (Northern Peru) (near-threatened)
      5. Amazon river dolphin (Amazon and Orinoco river basins) (insufficient data to assign a conservation status.)
      6. Amazon bamboo rat (Bolivia, Western Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru) (least concern)
      7. albina Suriname toad (French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname) (least concern)
      8. southern two-toed sloth (Northern Amazon Basin) (least concern)
      9. black spider monkey (Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana) (vulnerable)
      10. black bearded saki (Northeastern Brazil) (critically endangered)
  • Term Part of Speech Definition Encyclopedic Entry
    biodiversity Noun

    all the different kinds of living organisms within a given area.

    Encyclopedic Entry: biodiversity
    brackish water Noun

    salty water, usually a mixture of seawater and freshwater.

    buoyant Adjective

    capable of floating.

    camouflage Noun

    tactic that organisms use to disguise their appearance, usually to blend in with their surroundings.

    Encyclopedic Entry: camouflage
    canopy Noun

    one of the top layers of a forest, formed by the thick leaves of very tall trees.

    climate Noun

    all weather conditions for a given location over a period of time.

    Encyclopedic Entry: climate
    deforestation Noun

    destruction or removal of forests and their undergrowth.

    drainage basin Noun

    an entire river system or an area drained by a river and its tributaries. Also called a watershed.

    drought Noun

    period of greatly reduced precipitation.

    Encyclopedic Entry: drought
    ecosystem Noun

    community and interactions of living and nonliving things in an area.

    Encyclopedic Entry: ecosystem
    endangered species Noun

    organism threatened with extinction.

    Encyclopedic Entry: endangered species
    endemic species Noun

    species that naturally occurs in only one area or region.

    flood plain Noun

    flat area alongside a stream or river that is subject to flooding.

    Encyclopedic Entry: flood plain
    habitat Noun

    environment where an organism lives throughout the year or for shorter periods of time.

    Encyclopedic Entry: habitat
    liana Noun

    vine that takes root in the soil and winds around trees to the top of a forest canopy.

    mammal Noun

    animal with hair that gives birth to live offspring. Female mammals produce milk to feed their offspring.

    nutrient Noun

    substance an organism needs for energy, growth, and life.

    Encyclopedic Entry: nutrient
    pollinate Verb

    to transfer pollen from one part of a flower (the anther) to another (the stigma).

    rainforest Noun

    area of tall, mostly evergreen trees and a high amount of rainfall.

    Encyclopedic Entry: Rainforest
    sediment Noun

    solid material transported and deposited by water, ice, and wind.

    Encyclopedic Entry: sediment
    silt Noun

    small sediment particles.

    Encyclopedic Entry: silt
    species Noun

    group of similar organisms that can reproduce with each other.

    topography Noun

    study of the shape of the surface features of an area.

    tropical rain forest Noun

    grouping of tall evergreen trees, usually close to the Equator, which receives more than 203 centimeters (80 inches) of rain a year.

    understory Noun

    ecosystem between the canopy and floor of a forest.

    vegetation Noun

    all the plant life of a specific place.


Educational resources for this project funded by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and the BIO Program at the Inter-American Development Bank.