Culture

20 Bizarre Animals You Can Only Find In Latin America

Latin America is one of the most culturally rich places in the world and is actually home to some of the most biodiverse ecosystems on the planet. Meet some of the most interesting, unique and bizarre animals that could only exist in Latin America.

Who knows, maybe you’ll find your spirit animal, eh?

1. Capybaras | East of the Andes

CREDIT: @capybara_siesta / Instagram

Capybaras are the largest living rodent in the world (like 150 pounds big). These cutie vegetarians are like giant guinea pigs, but they have webbed feet and like to go swimming.

2. Jaguar Leopard | Mexico to Paraguay

CREDIT: @johnoatesphotography / Instagram

Jaguars eat everything from crocodiles to deer to monkeys and fish. They’re kind of loners, too.

3. Arboreal Sloth | Rainforests of Latin America

CREDIT: @chamiechum / Instagram

Did you know a sloth’s fur is considered an ecosystem of its own? These slow pokes live up in trees and descend once a week to poop.

4. Giant Anteater | Central and South America

CREDIT: @araraspantanalecolodge / Instagram

These anteaters can be as small as a squirrel or as long as 7 feet, but what’s really remarkable is that their lengua is 2 feet long so they can reach deep into ant hills.

5. Macaw Parrots | Amazon

CREDIT: @animalplanet.panski / Instagram

You’ve seen these guys tethered to sweaty guys on Miami Beach, but they belong flying free in the wild forests of the Amazon. They are the largest type of parrot and live off fruits and nuts.

6. Mexican Tree Frogs | Texas through Costa Rica

CREDIT: @alessandro.tramonti / Instagram

Standing at only 3″ tall, these tree frogs are known for their strange sound. They literally honk. I’m surprised they haven’t found a home in Miami.

7. Galápagos Tortugas | Galapagos Island

CREDIT: @christinhanneken / Instagram

These turtles have been around for 2-3 million years, hence becoming the namesake of the only island they can be naturally found. They weigh up to 550 pounds and live up to 150 years. #immortal

8. Brazilian Tapir | Brazil

CREDIT: @photoinnatura / Instagram

They look like a cross between a pig and an anteater but weigh up to 700 pounds from an herbivorous diet. Groups of tapirs are called a “candle.”

9. Andean Condor | Peru

CREDIT: @timothyramond / Instagram

Of course Peru would be home to the largest bird of flight. Their wingspan is 10 feet long and they can weigh up to 33 pounds. We recommend avoiding the zoo like the plague and visiting them in Peru’s Colca Canyon.

10. Galápagos Finches | Galapagos Island

CREDIT: @enchantedadventurescactus / Instagram

You might remember learning about these guys when learning about Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. He recorded 13 species of Galápagos Finches and how their different beak shapes determined their hold on food sources. This picture is of a Cactus Finch.

Read:

11. White Headed Capuchin Monkeys | Belize to Colombia

CREDIT: @fabienbeilhe / Instagram

Stay in a treehouse Airbnb in Costa Rica and you’re likely to see troops of these smart guys. Their lifespan and intelligence has made them vulnerable to animal testing, so shop cruelty-free, and go see them wild and free.

12. Golden Lion Tamarin | Amazon

CREDIT: @bioparcdedoue / Instagram

These monkeys are as small as squirrels with golden manes as regal as a lion. They only live wild in a coastal segment of the Amazon Rainforest.

13. Royal Flycatcher | Amazon

CREDIT: @faunayflora7 / Instagram

Of course these are Brazilian birds. They’re belleza headresses only come out when they’re mating or being handled by humans.

Read: 17 Latin Dog Breeds You Should Beg Your Mom To Let You Have

14. Blue-Footed Boobies | Galapagos Islands

CREDIT: @heckyeahletsdosomescience / Instagram

Alright, settle down children. You can tell why they’re called “blue-footed”–the males display their feet in a mating ritual with females. “Booby” comes from the Spanish word “bobo.” #TheMoreYouKnow

15. Blue Morpho Butterflies | Latin American Rainforests

CREDIT: @ashreec / Instagram

This butterfly has a wingspan of 8″, making it one of the largest butterflies in the world. The color actually comes from microscopic holes in the wings that reflect blue light (for our eyes at least).

Read: 20 Beautiful National Animals From Latin America That Are Everything

16. Maned Wolf | Grasslands of South America

CREDIT: @gzhenrique / Instagram

The Maned Wolf is actually not a wolf or a fox at all. It’s the largest wild dog species in South America.

17. “Jesus Christ” Lizard | Mexico to Ecuador

CREDIT: @superbentley305 / Instagram

Hey, Harry Potter fans, this is actually called a basilisk! They can run on water, which is why they’re called Jesus Christ lizards.

18. Marine Iguana | Galapagos Islands

CREDIT: @relax_itsnatalia / Instagram

Would you believe that these guys live off algae? The males dive deep into the water to eat algae while the females eat at low tide.

19. Toco Toucan | Brazil

CREDIT: Peter / Airbnb

It’s beak is a third the length of the whole bird, and you can only find them in the Amazon. There are many different species of toucans, but the Toco is the largest.

20. Amazon River Dolphin | Amazon

CREDIT: @azuladotcom / Instagram

We leave you with the Amazon river dolphin, aka the pink dolphin. As rare and beautiful as it looks, it’s actually the most common river dolphin on earth.

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

Mexican Couple Hailed As Heroes For Saving 10 Dogs From Flooding Caused By Hurricane Hanna

Culture

Mexican Couple Hailed As Heroes For Saving 10 Dogs From Flooding Caused By Hurricane Hanna

Betty Vaquera Escandón / Facebook

Hurricane Hanna slammed into Texas and Mexico on July 26 as a Category 1 hurricane. Yet, the most resilient story to come from Mexico is that of a couple who rescued some sweet puppies. Their ingenuity is something that will make every Mexican proud.

This is one of the most touching moments from Hurrican Hanna.

Mis papás perdieron todo… pero lograron sacar sus bebés 😭

Posted by Betty Vaquera Escandón on Sunday, July 26, 2020

That’s right. Those sweet puppies owe it all to the loving couple who took them into their bucket and rescued them. We have seen so many heartbreaking images over the years of animals abandoned to die when places flood during hurricanes.

The videos, posted by the couple’s daughter, is being accepted with so much love and excitement.

This is a fact. These people are some of the most compassionate people by saving these puppies. Who wouldn’t want to take the time to make sure that their furbabies are okay?

She posted a follow up live video when the flooding subsided to show just how damaging it was.

Posted by Betty Vaquera Escandón on Monday, July 27, 2020

The storm dropped 18 inches of rain on southern Texas and northern Mexico. The video shows damage throughout the couple’s home and the daughter was there to document it all for them. It is clear from the level of the water that there was nothing else that could have bee done to protect these little puppies.

They did another follow up just to thank everyone.

Posted by Betty Vaquera Escandón on Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Just like any good Latino couple, they thanked everyone who has reached out to them. It is truly such a sweet and wonderful story. We will forever keep this couple in our hearts because of everything they did.

Tbh, it would be so hard not to protect these angels.

Mi antidepresivo 🐶🐶🥰💕 #Elmilaneso

Posted by Betty Vaquera Escandón on Friday, July 10, 2020

We can only hope to be as selfless and important as this couple.

READ: Hurricane Hanna Battered Texas But Did It Actually Knock Over Part Of Trump’s Border Wall?

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

People Have A Lot Of Opinions About The Argentina Episode Of Netflix’s ‘Street Food: Latin America’

Culture

People Have A Lot Of Opinions About The Argentina Episode Of Netflix’s ‘Street Food: Latin America’

Manuel Velasquez / Getty Images

Netflix has a new food show out and it has everyone buzzing. “Street Food: Latin America” is bringing everyone the sabor of Latin America to their living room. However, reviews are mixed because of Argentina and the lack of Central American representation.

Netflix has a new show and it is all about Latin American street food.

Some of the best food in the world comes from Latin America. That is just a fact and it isn’t because our families and community come for Latin America. Okay, maybe just a little. The food of Latin America comes with history and stories that have shaped our childhood. For many of us, it is the only thing we have that connects us to the lands our families have left.

The show is highlighting the contributions of women to street food.

“Street Food: Latin America” focuses mainly on the women that are leading the street food cultures in different countries in Latin America. For some of them, it was a chance to bring themselves out of poverty and care for their children. For others, it was a rebellion against the male-dominated culture of cooking in Latin America.

However, some people have some strong opinions about the show and they aren’t good.

There is a lot of attention to native communities in the Latino community culturally right now. The Argentina episode where someone claims that Argentina is more European is rubbing people the wrong way right now. While the native population of Argentina is small, it is still important to highlight and honor native communities who are indigenous to the lands.

The disregard for the indigenous community is upsetting because indigenous Argentinians are fighting for their lives and land.

An A Jazeera report focused on an indigenous community in northern Argentina who were fighting to protect their land. After decades of discrimination and humiliation, members of the Wichi community fought to protect their land from the Argentinian government grabbing it in 2017. Early this year, before Covid, children of the tribe started to die at alarming rates of malnutrition.

Another pain point in the Latino community is the complete disregard of Central America.

Central America includes Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Belize, and Panama. Central America’s exclusion is not sitting right with Netflix users with Central American heritage. Like, how can five whole countries be looked over during a Netflix show about street food in Latin America?

Seems like there is a chance for Netflix to revisit Latin America for more food content.

There are so many countries in Latin America that offer delicious foods to the world. There is more to Latin America than Brazil, Mexico, Peru, Argentina, Colombia, and Bolivia.

READ: This Iconic Mexican Food Won The Twitter Battle To Be Named Latin America’s Best Street Food

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com