Anteater is a common name for the four extant and toothless mammal species commonly known for eating Ants and Termites. Together with the Sloths, they are within the order Pilosa. They are found in tropical savannas and forests from southern Mexico to Paraguay and northern Argentina.
They have long tails, an elongated skull and tubular muzzles. The mouth opening of the muzzle is small, but the salivary glands are large and secrete sticky saliva onto a wormlike tongue, which can be as long as 60 cm (12 inches) in the Giant Anteater. Anteaters live alone or in pairs (usually mother and offspring). Today we will be focusing on the Giant Anteater.
Keywords to learn
Extant = Still in existence, surviving
Slow Footed = Moving at a very slow pace, plodding
Hey Kids, my name is Adam the Anteater and I am very happy to meet you. Learn more about me and my species @ www.kids.nationalgeographic.com
- Lifespan:Giant Anteater. 16 years.
- Scientific name:Giant Anteater. Myrmecophaga Tridactyla.
- Mass:Giant Anteater. 30-41 Kgs. (fully grown).
- Length:Giant Anteater. 1.8 – 2.2 meters. (fully grown).
- Region Found:Giant Anteater. From Honduras in central America to Bolivia in South America.
- Population Status:Giant Anteater. Vulnerable.
- Current population trend:Giant Anteater. Decreasing.
- Diet:Giant Anteater. Insectivores.
- Sexual maturity:Giant Anteater. 2.5 – 4 years.
The Giant Anteater is a weird but wonderful animal, and now that you know more about the Giant Anteater by learning the key data above, be sure also to check out the fun facts on the Giant Anteater below. When you are finished learning the facts, try answering the questions in the Q&A corner on the bottom right side of the page.
Download questions about the anteater here: Anteater (answers are on this page)
Teachers. For more in depth work sheets on the anteater. Click on Kidskonnect Worksheets
Anteater Fun Facts for Kids
- # 1. Giant Anteaters have the longest and stickiest tongues of any animal in the world, which they use to catch their prey.
- # 2. Giant Anteaters can consume up to 30 thousand ants in a single day – which is even more impressive considering they sleep for sixteen hours a day.
- # 3. Giant Anteaters have only two known natural predators the Jaguar and mountain Lion.
- # 4. The Giant Anteater uses its sharp claws to tear an opening into an anthill and puts its long snout and effective tongue to work. But it has to eat quickly, flicking its tongue up to 160 times a minute. Ants fight back with painful stings, so an anteater may spend only a minute feasting on each mound. Anteaters never destroy a nest, preferring to return and feed again in the future.
- # 5. Giant Anteaters are nearsighted and slow-footed.
# 1. What class is the anteater apart of?
# 2. What is the population status of the Giant Anteater?
# 3. What are the known predators of the Giant Anteater?
# 4. How many hours do Giant Anteaters sleep for in a day?
# 5. How many times can a Giant Anteater flick its tongue in a minute?