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Arctic Animals - A List of Animals Found in the Arctic

The Arctic has a wider variety of animal life than Antarctica. The North Pole is in the middle of the Arctic Ocean which is surrounded by the land masses of North America, Europe and Asia so there is a land connection meaning that land animals can reach the Arctic unlike Antarctica where animals must be able to swim or fly there across hundreds of miles of frigid and storm-prone ocean even at the narrowest point.

The animals of the north polar region can be seasonal visitors at the edge, permanent residents of the deep Artic or anywhere in-between.

Land Mammals Birds Other Animals

Arctic Fox - Vulpes lagopus



Arctic Hare - Lepus arcticus


Arctic Wolf - Canis lupus arctos


Caribou / Reindeer - Rangifer tarandus


Moose - Alces alces


Dall Sheep - Ovis dalli


Ermine - Mustela erminea


Lemming - Lemmus lemmus


Musk Ox - Ovibos moschatus


Polar Bear - Ursus maritimus


Sea Otter - Enhydra lutris


Snowshoe Hare / Snowshoe Rabbit
Lepus americanus


Wolverine - Gulo gulo

Arctic Skua - Stercorarius parasiticus


Arctic Tern - Sterna paradisaea



Bald Eagle - Haliaeetus leucocephalus


Canada Goose - Branta canadensis


Brunnich's Guillemots - Uria lomvia


Ptarmigan - Lagopus muta


Puffin - Fratercula arctica


Snowy Owl - Bubo scandiacus


Snow Goose - Chen caerulescens

Arctic Woolly Bear Moth (caterpillar)
Gynaephora groenlandica



Beluga Whale - Delphinapterus leucas


Greenland Shark
Somniosus microcephalus


Narwhal - Monodon monoceros


Orca - Orcinus orca


Bearded Seal - Erignathus barbatus


Harp Seal - Pagophilus groenlandicus


Hooded Seal - Cystophora cristata


Ribbon Seal - Histriophoca fasciata


Ringed Seal - Pusa hispida


Spotted Seal - Phoca largha


Walrus - Odobenus rosmarus

Picture credits:

Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 license: Arctic Skua - Donald Macauley, Arctic Wolf - tsaiproject, Bald Eagle - Ron Holmes of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Northeast Region, Dalls Sheep - National Park Service Alaska Region, Greenland Shark -  Uglyoverload.com, Arctic Woolly Bear Moth - Mike Beauregard, Harp Seal colony ~Dawn~ from Saratoga California USA, Lemming - Sander van der Wel, Puffins - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Headquarters, Snow Goose - U.S. Fish Wildlife Service Headquarters, Snowshoe Hare - Denali National Park and Preserve, Snowy Owl - U.S. Fish Wildlife Service Headquarters,  Spotted Seal - Tomomori.

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license - Arctic Fox - Algkalv, Beluga - Premier gov ru, Ermine - 4028mdk09, Ringed Seal - Alexander Butakov.

All other images are copyright of CoolAntarctica.com or are in the public domain.


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