Tundra animals photos and names | Animal world of the tundra

The boundless nature of the tundra is distinguished by its severe beauty. These areas are dominated by low-growing perennial grasses, lichens and mosses. A distinctive feature of this nature is the absence of forests due to strong winds and low temperatures. The climate of the tundra is quite harsh, it has a long winter, and the summer is very short. Polar nights are familiar in the tundra, and snow lies for more than six months. Despite this, the nature of the tundra is populated by some species of animals that adapted to the features of these territories.


Ordinary fox (polar fox)

Often this animal is called a polar fox. This is a monogamous predatory animal that lives in a family for the period of growing offspring, and then solitary. White hair of the animal is an excellent masking on the snowy lands of the tundra. A fox ordinary omnivorous animal, eats both plant and animal food.


A powerful animal adapted for life in cold, protracted winter. It has thick wool and large branched horns, which the deer changes annually. Live in herds and roam the tundra. In winter, the diet of a deer most often consists of reindeer moss lichen, such meager food makes the animal look for sea water to replenish its mineral reserves. The deer loves grass, berries and mushrooms.


Famous small rodents of the tundra, which feed on most predatory animals. The rodent loves leaves, seeds and tree roots. This animal does not hibernate in winter, therefore it specially hides food supplies in summer, and digs them up in winter. If there is not enough food, rodents have to arrange mass relocation to another territory. Lemmings are very prolific.

musk ox

A unique animal resembling the appearance of both bulls and sheep. in Eurasia, these animals live on the territory of nature reserves and are protected. The animal has a long and thick coat. Musk oxen see well at night and can find food deep under the snow. They live in a herd, the main enemies of the animal are the wolf and the polar bear.


Fluffy small animal with short front legs, which are endowed with sharp claws. Most gophers store food. In this case, cheek pouches help them well. You can recognize a gopher by a certain whistle with which animals communicate.

polar Wolf

Subspecies of the common wolf, characterized by white or almost white hair. They live in flocks and are able to travel long distances in search of food. Polar wolves can chase prey at speeds up to 60 km per hour. Often prey on musk oxen and hares.



It belongs to predators, although at first glance it is a very cute and kind animal. It has a long body and short legs, in winter it acquires a snow-white color. The stoat feeds on rodents and can also eat eggs, fish, and even hares. The animal is included in the Red Book, as it has always been valuable for fur hunters.

polar hare

The largest among its brethren. In winter, the polar hare has a white color and feeds on branches and bark of trees, in summer it loves grass and legumes. In one summer, a female can bring 2-3 litters.

Polar bear

The comfortable life of the polar bear in the Arctic is ensured by its fur, which is equipped with a thick undercoat that can retain heat for a long time, and also prevents solar radiation. Due to its 11 cm fat layer, it can store a large amount of energy.

Brown bear

Red (common) fox

They live in the tundra, where they feed on small animals like lemmings, but when the situation is convenient, they do not hesitate to hunt for other prey. Hares are rarely caught, because they are quite problematic to catch because of the evolved species, but bird eggs or the chicks themselves are often the target of a hungry predator. These mammals live near large rivers or other bodies of water, during the spawning season they feed on salmon or other fish that die during spawning. If necessary, they can also eat insects if food is missing for too long. In extreme cases, the fox can also eat carrion. But these predators also need plant foods, without which they will die pretty quickly. This is due to the fact that there are not so many vitamin fruits in the tundra zones, therefore, some useful substances in the diet of foxes may not be. This disadvantage is compensated by eating berries or plant shoots.

snow sheep

A muscular animal of not the largest size, one of the representatives of the genus of sheep, belonging to the order of artiodactyls. It has a small head, on which small ears are located, the neck is not particularly distinguished by its length, and is itself quite short. The horns have a peculiar relief, they are curved, which allows them to scare off larger animals with their appearance alone. They taper towards the end of the horns, can slightly bend to the sides, and closer to the base they become denser and thicker.
The mountainous regions of the tundra can be considered the habitat of snow sheep, provided that the snow cover in them does not exceed forty centimeters in height, but these animals are not satisfied with a large crust either. They mainly live in Eastern Siberia, there are several foci in which all populations of this mammal live.


The main difference between this animal and ordinary reindeer is that the caribou is found in North America, which is quite far from the range of its fellow, whose habitat is considered to be the tundra zones of Eurasia. It does not have any external and internal differences from another species, if you do not take into account the fact that caribou is the name of a reindeer that lives in the wild, when an ordinary reindeer can be tamed. Many years ago, a huge number of countless herds of these mammals roamed the American part of the continent, but due to the arrival of the colonialists, their numbers suffered. In the tundra of North America, there are three main types of caribou: Caribou Piri, Granta Caribou and caribou, which lives in Greenland Greenland Caribou.



Outwardly, it resembles a chicken and a dove. During the year, the female changes plumage three times, and the male four. This contributes to effective camouflage. Partridge flies poorly, it feeds mainly on plant foods. Before winter, the bird tries to eat worms and insects in order to stock up on fat for the winter.

snowy owl

In the wild, the life expectancy of snowy owls reaches 9 years, and in captivity, some individuals break records and live up to 28 years. For a long time it was believed that the number of these birds is quite large, but only recently it turned out that their number is much smaller than expected. At the moment, snowy owls are included in the list of animals under protection.

red-throated goose

Red-breasted gooses are able to achieve high speeds during flight, due to the frequent flapping of their wings. Being an extremely mobile and noisy bird, they form disorderly flocks, which either stretch out in one line, or huddle together. In the wild, these birds are easily recognizable by their characteristic cackle and hiss.

pink seagull

This representative of gulls is notable for its characteristic pale pink color of feathers, which is combined with a blue tint of head feathers. Despite their small size, these birds survive well in the tundra. Life expectancy reaches a maximum of 12 years. Listed in the Red Book.


Has a second name white falcon. It is similar in size to a peregrine falcon. The plumage is usually white with a gray tint. Notable for its ability to gain speed up to 100 meters per second, and also has extremely sharp eyesight. At the moment, this species is listed in the Red Book as in need of help and attention.

white-billed loon

Quite an overall representative, with a body length of up to 91 centimeters and a weight of up to 6 kilograms. Distinguished from other loons by its ivory beak. The population of this bird is extremely low throughout its range. Listed in the Red Book of Eurasia, and also protected in a number of Arctic reserves.


Represents the family of finches. A small bird with a body length of up to 20 centimeters. Distinguished by its characteristic sand plumage. As the only representative of the Canadian sandpiper genus, it is a very rare species. Distributed throughout the tundra of North America. Spends winter in Argentina or Uruguay.

Lapland plantain

A bird that lives in the northern tundra. It can be found in Siberia, Sweden, Norway and northern Europe. Usually settles in areas overgrown with many plants.

Plumage dull, colors ranging from grayish to brown. There are stripes on the head and wings, as well as small dark specks. By the breeding season, the Lapland plantain undergoes a noticeable transformation: quite a lot of black and white stripes appear on its body, the back of the head changes its color to red, thereby creating a noticeable contrast compared to the body.

When the snow is just beginning to melt, Lapland plantains start building their nest. They collect tree roots, grass and moss from all around, and then cover the surface with dried grass and animal hair left after molting.


This bird has a second name snow plantain, usually lives in the tundra zone of America and Eurasia. Males during the breeding season change their color to black and white, and females become black and brown with small gaps on the abdomen and chest, which can often be pure white. On dark feathers, they have a light stroke. In winter, they change their color to adapt to their environment and be less visible to predators. It is in the browned grass that the snow bunting live in winter, because their color merges with them. In summer, this bird feeds on insects, and in winter it eats only grains and seeds.


Pretty small birds from the wader family, in their appearance are quite similar to sparrows. They differ from them in a strong physique, a straight and short beak, as well as longer wings. They have short legs without hind toes. Mostly the color varies from gray to brown, but the underbelly is light gray or almost white. Sometimes they have stripes on their neck or head.

Plovers feed on invertebrates, and not in the most usual way: they run along the ground at high speed, looking out for and catching their prey. They live in northern parts of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula.

tundra swan

The main habitat of tundra swans is the Asian part of the Russian tundra, as well as some part of Europe. They usually eat grass, berries, as well as aquatic vegetation, which these birds can get without any problems thanks to their long neck. The eastern inhabitants of its range disdain to eat small fish that are found in shallow water, as well as aquatic invertebrates like fry.

In appearance, it does not differ much from other swans, for example, from the whooper, but this species is considered one of the smallest in size among its fellows. All of them, without exception, are monogamous their couple remains with them until their death, only in extreme cases there are individuals who can be polygamous, but these are the exceptions to the rule, since swans are considered a symbol of love to the grave. They build a nest with the help of branches, dry foliage, and cover the inside with their down, creating a softer surface. Their place of residence is located on the hills. These birds leave their habitats in autumn and go to Western Europe for the winter because their body is not able to endure severe cold.

Pipit red-throated

A bird that lives in the Eurasian part of the tundra and on the western shores of Alaska, which stands out from the rest with its variegated colors and small size, belongs to the Wagtail family. He chooses swampy areas as a place to build a nest, and builds his place of residence directly on the ground. This arrangement does not allow birds of prey that can fly over and eat eggs, as well as predators that can climb trees, to eat the family or the seahorse itself. Their colors are similar in their shades to the swamp, so in summer or autumn it becomes problematic even for the human eye to notice them.

This bird got its name due to its memorable colors in certain places, which contrast very much with the rest of the body: their throat, sides, and chest are painted in brown-red shades. The area around the eyes is white or gray, the belly and eyebrows too, the back and wings have dark brown stripes. All other parts of the body are yellow-green, rather dull, which contributes to good camouflage among plants. The singing of red-throated skates is very memorable, they usually perform their trills in flight and only rarely sing on the ground.


Animal tundra are unique representatives of their species. Despite the fact that the nature of the tundra is very cruel, there are enough animal species in it. Each of them has adapted to long cold and frosts in his own way. In this nature, the species composition of animals is small, but it differs in a large number.

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