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What Are the Different Types of Wetland Animals?

Wetlands are biodiversity hotspots, teeming with life. From the stealthy alligator to the industrious beaver, each creature plays a vital role in this aquatic tapestry. Birds like herons stalk the shallows, while amphibians such as frogs chorus at dusk. Intrigued by the variety of wetland inhabitants? Discover how each species uniquely contributes to the wetland ecosystem's delicate balance. What fascinates you about these ecosystems?
Nick Mann
Nick Mann

Wetlands are geographic locations covered with large amounts of water, with some examples being swamps and bogs. Although wetlands can be found in a wide range of locations and climates around the world, many locations are warm throughout much of the year. Some near the equator are warm or hot all year long. The amount of water that wetlands have makes them capable of sustaining a wide variety of plant and animal life. Some common types of wetland animals include reptiles, amphibians, birds, fish and mammals.

Reptiles are cold blooded wetland animals that typically live in sunny locations where they can bask. Crocodiles and alligators are some of the largest reptiles, and have been around for millions of years. A few types of snakes are also found in this type of environment. Common in some wetland areas, the cottonmouth is very venomous, and its bites can kill if they are not quickly treated. In addition, turtles and lizards often make their homes in wetlands, where there is plenty of food.

Turtles often live in wetlands.
Turtles often live in wetlands.

Amphibians are additional types of wetland animals that usually prefer to live in freshwater as opposed to saltwater. Like reptiles, they are also cold blooded. Some examples of amphibians are frogs, toads and salamanders which all have a similar diet of plants, insects and worms.

There are also several types of birds that are wetland animals, and thrive in these habitats. Some of the more common wetland birds include ducks, geese, waterfowl, egrets and herons. Wetlands serve as beneficial habitats for birds because of the protection that they offer. The dense brush and grass are ideal for birds to hide their eggs from the reach of predators. In addition, there is almost always an ample amount of food available which includes small fish, insects, snakes and frogs.

A crocodile.
A crocodile.

Like many environments with water, wetlands can also provide a home to numerous types of fish. They can be found in both freshwater and saltwater locations, and are often eaten by animals higher on the food chain. Bass, trout, flounder and mackerel are some of the varieties of fish that live in wetland environments.

In addition, there are a few types of mammals that are wetland animals. Deer, beavers and muskrats are often found in these areas. Unlike cold blooded animals, mammals are warm blooded which means that they can survive in cooler environments. The diet of these creatures usually consists of plants growing near the water's surface and fish.

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Discussion Comments


Thank you for putting this up because this may play a role in stopping the draining of wetlands.


@KoiwiGal - You've made me think of something I saw available in a couple of places, including Australia.

There are night trips through wetlands, where you get into a canoe or some other kind of boat and follow a guide in the dark to see some of the animals in wetlands you can't see during the day.

I really wanted to do one I saw in Australia, but it was too expensive for me at the time. I think it would be quite scary, particularly in places where there are animals like alligators or crocodiles.

Even snakes might make you a bit nervous, although I guess they don't often come out after sundown. But, the beauty of the night would make up for that.


@pastanaga - If you want to see a really excellent recreation of wetlands, you should check out the zoo in Omaha, Nebraska.

It's usually named as one of the top three zoos in the country and for good reason.

The exhibit I remember the most vividly was the wetland exhibit. You walk along a swingbride like path, above water that's filled with wetlands animals and plants, like alligators and even beavers. There is nothing between you and them except some netting and the pathway. It's dark and there are birds and animals calling all around you.

It really feels like you're walking through a swamp at night.

They have a few excellent walk through exhibits but that one was definitely my favorite.


Some of the most beautiful nature reserves I've seen have been based in wetlands. Particularly the Okeefenokee swamp in Florida.

I went on a boat ride there with my father as part of school vacation one year and it was absolutely fascinating. We were there to see alligators of course, but the rest of it was also really interesting. So many different animals, like birds and frogs and dragonflies, and water lilies everywhere, as well as things like orchids and handing vines.

I really want to go back. I've also gone on platform walks across wetlands that have been really excellent. You never see as much wildlife in any other kind of place.

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    • Turtles often live in wetlands.
      Turtles often live in wetlands.
    • A crocodile.
      A crocodile.
    • A frog from a wetland.
      By: andrewburgess
      A frog from a wetland.
    • A wetland.
      By: Elenathewise
      A wetland.
    • Salamanders may live in the wetlands.
      By: Eric Isselée
      Salamanders may live in the wetlands.
    • Wetlands are beneficial habitats for ducks and other waterfowl because of their protective cover.
      By: nastia1983
      Wetlands are beneficial habitats for ducks and other waterfowl because of their protective cover.