Dominican Republic Fauna presents more then 30 scpecies brought by European colonizers. There are not any big native wild animals in Dominican Republic, except wild boars (very rare to see).
Horses, cows, pigs, mules, sheeps, goats are often seen of farms, and all brought by Spanish.
The only two native mammals species are Hutia (Jutia) and Solenodons.
Hispaniolan Hutia (Plagiodontia aedium), inhabit forests, from sea level to 2,000 meters in elevation. Possible places to see Dominican Hutia is National Park Jaragua, and National Park del Este. Hutia is long (or round) 30 to 40 cm.
Hispaniolan Solenodon (Solenodon paradoxus) is a solenodon found only on this island, Hispaniola. Solenodon was unknown until 1833 year, and was discovered by Johann Friedrich von Brandt, a German naturalist. Solenodon Paradoxus is nocturnal animal, it has venomous bite, and not immune to its own venom. Solenodon is long around 30 cm. It can be atacked by cat or dog. Solenodon is considered endangered specie. Solenodon can be seen in National Park Jaragua, National Park del Este and National Park Sierra de Bahoruco.
As we are surrounded by water, Dominican Republic is home for Humpback Whales and Manatees, a Sea mammals.
Humpback Whales are coming from mid January until the end of the March, to mate and give birth in Dominican waters. Humpback Whales are mostly seen at Silver Bank, 60 miles North of the island Hipaniola, and in the bay of Samana.
Manatees are also called sea cows, but they share a distant ancestor with the elephant. Manatees can weight up to 1,200 pounds (545 kilos) and 12 feet long (3.6 meters). Manatees can be found in Dominican Republic, in Laguna Estero Hondo (North West), Samana (North East), and National Park del Este (South East).
Dominican Republic dolphins are: Grey dolphin, Fraser's dolphin, Atlantic Spinner dolphin, Rough-toothed dolphin.
There are more then 1,400 species of Reptiles in Dominican Republic, and 83% are native to this island, Hispaniola. There are Americal Crocodiles at the South West, Lake Enriquillo, also Iguanas, lizards, frogs, toads and snakes (non poison snakes in Dominican Republic).
American Crocodiles can be found in Lake Enriquillo, National Park Montecristi and in Laguna Gri-Gri near Río San Juan (North coast). Lake Enriquillo is salt water lake, and American Crocodiles adapted, can be seen in the early morning.
Two endangered native Iguana species, Ricord Iguana and Rhinoceros Iguana are found in Lake Enriquillo and Laguna Oviedo (South West). Iguanas are are strict herbivores (plant eating only).
Jaragua Sphaero (Sphaerodactylus ariasae) is a dwarf gecko, size from 16 to 18 mm. Jaragua Sphaero can be found in island of Alto Velo, South of the Pedernales Peninsula (South West).
Sea Turtles can be seen in National Park Montecristi, National Park del Este, Lagoons of Jaragua National Park. There are four species on Dominican coasts, Leatherback, Loggerhead, Hawksbill and Green Sea Turtle, as well as sweet water turtles, found in Laguna Rincón (South West).
There are numerous Sea Fish species, as Bluefish, Tuna, King Mackerel, Marlin, Swordfish, Sea Bass, Snapper, Kingfish, Barracuda, and Grouper. You can also check the list of 527 species, All Fishes of Dominican Republic. Reefs and swamps are also inhabiting shrimp, conch, spiny lobsters, crabs, eels, and many reef fish, including parrotfish.
Coral Reefs are complexed formations of living organisms, hard corals, which apsorbs Calcium Carbonate from the Sea water, and creates limestone. Ecosystem of Coral creates symbiotic relation with
Birds in Dominican Republic are variety of more then 300 species, native and migratory. Endemic species number is around 29 and 10 of those are under extinction. Places for Dominican Republic Bird Watching are National Park Sierra Bahoruco, and Laguna Oviedo in National Park Jaragua.
Endemic bird species are Palm chat (Cigua palmera), Hispaniolan parrot (Amazona ventralis), Hispaniolan parakeet (Aratinga chloroptera),Hispaniolan trogon (Priotelus roseigaster), Hispaniolan lizard cuckoo (Saurothera longirostris), Hispaniolan woodpecker (Melanerpes striatus), Narrow-billed tody (Todus angustirostris).
Dominican Republic Water Birds are: Flamingos, Blue Heron, Great Egret, American Frigate Bird, Brown Pelicans, and Glossy Ibis.
Dominican Republic Mountain Birds are White Necked Crows, Green Tailed Warblers, Antillean Siskins, and Hummingbirds, also endemic Dominican Mountain Birds are Pitangua and White Winged Crossbill, can be found in National Park Sierra Bahoruco and Cordillera Central mountain.
One of the strangest migratory birds is "Dominican York Bird" Bicknell’s Thrush, that comes from New York, and spends most of the year in Dominican Republic. Bicknell's Trush comes to Dominican Republic without touristic Visa, just after summer breeding season and stays in Dominican mountains.
Bats in Dominican Republic
Jamaican fruit-eating bat, Cuban fruit-eating bat, Red bat, Waterhouse's leaf-nosed bat, Pallas's mastiff bat, Leach's single leaf bat, Antillean ghost-faced bat, Mexican funnel-eared bat, Greater bulldog bat, Big free-tailed bat, Cuban flower bat, Cuban fig-eating bat, Parnell's mustached bat, Sooty mustached bat, Brazilian free-tailed bat. Bats in Dominican Republic can be found in El Pomier Caves near San Cristóbal, in Jaragua National Park and other areas. Bats feast on mosquitoes, insects, or on fruits.
Dominican Republic has countless instects, and probably you will notice Mosquitoes after several days of rain (that is rare in Punta Cana). In Dominican Republic there are 32 species of Scorpions. Blue Scorpion, Centruroides gracilis is used for reasearching the anti-cancer cure. (*note - sold commercially and with the high price...)
There are not any posion spiders in Dominican Republic.
Dominican Republic National Parks and Scientific reserves are:
- National Park Armando Bermúdez
- National Park José del Carmen Ramírez
- National Park Nalga de Maco
- National Park Montecristi (El Morro de Monte Cristo)
- National Park del Este
- National Park Los Haitises
- National Park Jaragua
- National Park Sierra de Bahoruco
- National Park Isla Cabritos y Lago Enriquillo
- National Park Sierra de Neyba
- National Park Sierra de Martín García
- National Park Cabo Francés Viejo
- National Park Submarino La Caleta
- National Park Litoral Norte de Puerto Plata
- National Park Litoral Sur de Santo Domingo
- National Park Juan Ulises Garcia Bonnelly (Loma la Guardarraya)
- National Park Humedales del Ozama
- National Park Manglares de Estero Balsa
- National Park Manglares de Bajo Yuna
- National Park Nalga de Maco
- National Park Valle Nuevo
- National Park Montana La Humeadora
Dominican Republic Fauna