20 Facts about the Amazon Rainforest

Amazon Jungle Tours Manaus rainforest

Amazon Rainforest Facts

The Amazon is a mysterious place and for many of you far from home. Maybe you still want to go to the Amazon river once in your life but right now is not the right time yet. That is why Off Roads Travel presents you some facts about the Amazon so you get at least a little glance of what the Amazon is like. Here are 20 amazing Amazon Rainforest facts:

1. How big is the Amazon Jungle?

The Amazon is the largest rainforest on earth at 6.7 million square metres. With this, it beats the number two and three on this list Indonesia and Congo combined. The Amazon rainforest covers 40% of the South American continent. This gives it almost as much contiguous surface area as the United States. Besides deforestation of the Amazon, the rainforest remains 80% intact and untouched. 

2. What countries is the Amazon Rainforest covering?

The Amazon rainforest covers 9 countries in South-America: Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia, Ecuador, Suriname, French Guyana, Venezuela, Peru and Guyana. 

amazon river brazil, manaus

3. What country covers the biggest part of the Amazon?

Most of the Amazon rainforest is found in Brazil. ⅔ of the rainforest is found in Brazil.

4. How many species of animals live in the rainforest?

The Amazon ecosystem contains more than 3 million different animal species. In the Amazon alone, 10% of all the animal species worldwide can be found. The Amazon is home to 427 species of mammals, 378 species of reptiles, 1300 species of birds and more than 400 species of amphibians. Examples of Animals you may encounter while touring the jungle are: Jaguars, Capybaras, Snakes, Pink River Dolphins, Anacondas, Sloths and Colored Frogs.  

dart frog amazon rainforest 1

5. What are the most seen animals in the Amazon rainforest?

  • Ants and Termites (of course)
  • Monkeys
  • Caimans
  • Frogs
  • Oropendolas and Caciques
  • Toucans 
  • Hoatzins
  • Parrots & Macaws
  • Herons & Egrets
  • Spiders

6. How many endangered species are there in the Amazon?

In 2013, there were 2633 animals from the Amazon forest on the IUCN Red List. The IUCN Red List is a list of animals that are threatened with extinction. Examples of animals at risk:

  • Amazonian tapir
  • Giant otter
  • Jocotoco Antipitta
  • Uakari Monkey
20 facts about the Amazon tapir, the south american, animal-4155997.jpg

7. How many species have gone extinct in the rainforest?

Due to the substantial deforestation in the Amazon, several animal species have become extinct in the Amazon in recent years. The extinct species include 20 bird species, 10 mammal species and 8 amphibian species. 2 examples of extinct bird species are the Cryptic Treehunter and the Spix Macaw. 

8. How many kinds of plants and trees are there in the rainforest?

The Amazon Rainforest is the most biodiverse tropical rainforest area on earth. The Amazon is home to approximately 80,000 plant species and 16,000 tree species. It is estimated that the Amazon Rainforest contains about 390 billion trees. These trees and plants are of great importance in regulating the global climate and maintaining the water cycle. 

plants amazon rainforest 1

9. How much of the rainforest has been destroyed?

Since 1970, 17% of the Amazon rainforest has been burned or logged. 

10. What is the climate of the rainforest?

The climate type in the Amazon is a humid subtropical climate. This type of climate is characterized by a lot of precipitation which is distributed more or less evenly throughout the year. Furthermore, it is very hot throughout the year and is wetter than in a Mediterranean climate. There is also a lot of thunderstorms and sporadic tropical cyclones.

11. How old is the Amazon rainforest?

The Amazon is 10 million years old.

12. What is the average temperature in the Amazon rainforest?

The Amazon region is very close to the equator. This ensures that it has somewhat the same temperature throughout the year. The temperature varies throughout the year around 26 and 32 degrees Celsius during the day. At night the temperature will not drop below 23 degrees. 

Sunset Jungle Tours Amazon Off Roads

13. Who still lives in the Amazon rainforest?

The Amazon is home to 350 different ethnicities. In the past, it is also estimated that about 1 million indigenous Indians have lived there. These were/are again divided into about 400 different tribes. Each tribe has its own language, culture and territory. Almost all Indian tribes that still exist today have contact with the inhabited world. But there are also tribes that have not yet made contact with the inhabited world. It is estimated that about 30,000 ‘uncontacted’ Indian tribes still live in the Brazilian Amazon region. They still live the same lives their ancestors lived thousands of years ago. The area where these tribes live has been declared a protected area by the government. Only the Indians themselves may decide whether to seek contact with the outside world. 

14. What are the big Amazon rainforest cities?

  • Manaus, Brazil, 1.8 million inhabitants
  • Belem, Brazil, 1.5 million
  • Iquitos, Peru, 377,000 inhabitants
  • Santarem, Brazil, 306,480 inhabitants
  • Puerto Maldonado, Peru, 85,000 inhabitants
  • Leticia, Colombia, 48,000
What to do in Manaus teatro Amazonas Off Roads

15. Are there still fires in the Amazon?

267 fires have been recorded in the Amazon in 2021. In total, these fires have burned over 105,000 acres of land. This is an area the size of Los Angeles, California. Despite the Brazilian government’s ban on starting fires, most of the fires occurred in the Brazilian portion of the Amazon (about 70%).

16. What is the average amount of rainfall in the Amazon every year?

The rainy season in the Amazon lasts from December to May. During these months, you can expect higher water levels of the rivers, which means better accessibility to and navigation of the rivers. If you book a tour during these days, it is recommended to bring rainproof clothing. It can rain up to 20 days a month with a monthly precipitation of about 220 mm to 320 mm. 

Graph temperature vs waterfall

17. How quickly does the rainforest grow?

About a third of the rainforest that was lost in the years before 1980 has partially grown back in about 35 years. This lost area was about the size of the united kingdom and has grown back for the most part, according to Celso Junior Silva, a ph.D candidate at the Brazilian Institute for Space Research. He says that the current actions, to stop deforestation and let the rainforest grow back, will be redundant if the current emissions are not stopped.

18. How long is the Amazon River

The Amazon River runs through the northern Amazon and is 6840km long. This makes it the second largest river on earth after the Nile. 

20 Facts Of The Amazon Ranforest

19. How did the Amazon get her name?

The first European to explore the Amazon river, in 1541, was the Spanish soldier Francisco de Orellana and his 60 men. They floated the length of the Amazon river from present-day Peru to the Atlantic. The expedition was attacked by indigenous groups, including by what they thought were bands of women like the Amazons of Greek mythology. Thus the world’s greatest river got its name.

20. Why is the Amazon rainforest so important?

Despite covering only around 1% of the planet’s surface, the Amazon rainforest is home to 10% of all the wildlife species we know about – and probably a lot that we don’t know yet. The Amazon rainforest has an incredibly rich ecosystem – there are around 40,000 plant species, 1,300 bird species, 3,000 types of fish, 430 mammals and 2.5 million different insects.  People around the world, as well as locally, depend on the Amazon. Not just for food, water, wood and medicines, but to help stabilise the climate, playing a critical role in global and regional carbon and water cycles. 

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Many people nowadays want to escape the modern jungle to visit the real jungle and there is every reason for that. 

The Amazon is the most magical place in the world. One of the few places in the world that still preserves purity. If you have an adventurous mindset and want to travel to this place, you will certainly benefit from the following travel guide.

In this travel guide we will remove a number of uncertainties for you and answer frequently asked questions.

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