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PARAGUAY
Plants and Animals

Plants and Animals

Plants

Paraguay's vegetation is strongly dependent on the amount of rainfall and therefore decreases from east to west. The subtropical forests in the humid valleys of eastern Paraguay, near the border with Brazil, are the most densely vegetated. The main tree species are lapacho, quebracho, trébol, peoba and guatambú. Between this forest area and the Río de Paraguay we find savannahs with here and there gallery woods along the rivers. To the west of the Paraguay, the savannah landscape with Caranday palms changes into a landscape with scrub and thorny bushes, while the valuable quebracho can also be found here. The Chaco consists of steppes and savannahs and in its southernmost part there are swamps. The eastern part of Paraguay is steppe-like in the south. Throughout the country plants like philodendron and orchids can be found.

The national flower of Paraguay is the blue passion flower, the national tree of Paraguay is the pink trumpet tree.

Animals

The Paraguayan wildlife is very diverse, but is under pressure, especially in the densely populated east. A number of mammals such as giant anteater, giant armadillo, maned wolf, otter, Brazilian tapir, pampa deer and swamp deer are threatened with extinction in Paraguay. A small success has been achieved with the Chaco peccary, which had not been sighted in Paraguay for over fifty years. In the mid-1970s, the animal was rediscovered.

In Paraguay, and especially in the Chaco, there are about 365 species of birds, including 21 species of parrots and parakeets, the jabirú and wood storks, plumed ibises and various water birds. The lowlands are teeming with reptiles, including two species of caiman, anacondas and boa constrictors. The marshes on both sides of the Paraguay River are very rich in water birds, while there is also a lungfish that can withstand even the complete drying out of its habitat.

Paraguay has several national parks and protected areas. The three largest are in the Chaco while the smaller, biologically very different areas are in Eastern Paraguay. Only a few of these areas are accessible to tourists.


Sources

Bernhardson, W. / Argentina, Uruguay & Paraguay
Lonely Planet

Kleinpenning, J. / Paraguay
Koninklijk Instituut voor de Tropen

CIA - World Factbook

BBC - Country Profiles

Last updated May 2024
Copyright: Team The World of Info