21 Wild Animals in Egypt

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Want to know more about the animals in Egypt? Here’s a list of 21 Egyptian animals that you can see in the wild:


Rock hyrax

The rock hyrax, also known as cape hyrax or rock badger, is a small mammal native to the Middle East and Africa.

It weights between 4-5 kg (9-11 lb) and has a short tail and ears.

They typically live in groups of 10-80 animals at elevations up to 4200 m (13800 ft). They live in rock crevices to easily escape predators.

The rock hyrax is active during the morning and evening, but this is something that can change with climate and season.

  • Common name: Rock hyrax
  • Scientific name: Procavia capensis
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Herbivore / Omnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 10 years
  • Length: 50 cm (20 in)
  • Weight: 4 kg (8.8 lb)
rock hyrax

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Camel – One of the most famous animals in Egypt

Camels are the most famous among Egyptian animals and are known for being big animals with humps on their backs.

The humps are actually large fatty deposits, and are not filled with water as many people believe. The concentrating body fat in their humps helps them to survive in hot climates and they can go 10 days without drinking water.

This is no doubt one of the most interesting animals in Egypt.

  • Common name: Camel
  • Scientific name: Camelus dromedarius
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Herbivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 40-50 years
  • Length: 3 m (9.8 ft)
  • Height: 2 m (6.5 ft)
  • Weight: 700 kg (1543 lb)
camel

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Dorcas gazelle

This is one of the animals in Egypt that’s native to the desert and semi-dests of the country and also the Middle East.

The Dorcas gazelle is on of the most desert-adapted gazelles that can go months without drinking water. They can do this since they obtain all needed moisture from the plants they eat.

  • Common name: Dorcas gazelle
  • Scientific name: Gazella dorcas
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Herbivore
  • Average life span in the wild: up to 12 years
  • Length: 90-110 cm (3-3.6 ft)
  • Height: 55-65 cm (1.8-2.1 ft)
  • Weight: 15-20 kg (33-44 lb)
Dorcas gazelle

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Dugong

This is one of the most unusual animals in Egypt and is a distant cousin of the manatee.

The Dugong, also known as the sea cow, is an interesting creature that is found in the waters outside Marsa Alam and Abu Dabbab in Egypt.

They can grow up to 3 m (9.8ft) in body length and weight more than 250 kg (551 lb).

  • Common name: Dugong
  • Scientific name: Dugong dugon
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Herbivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 70 years
  • Length: 3 m (9.8 ft)
  • Weight: 250+ kg (551+ lb)
Dugong

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Caracal

This is an animal that’s often referred as the African lynx, Persian lynx, or desert lynx, although it’s not a lynx at all. It’s a wild cat that lives in the deserts of Egypt, as well as other countries in Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia and India.

It’s characterized by its long strong legs and short face with tufted ears. It has a sandy to reddish tan fur with a lighter color on its belly, under it’s cheek and around the eyes.

They can get 40-50 cm (16-20 in) at the shoulder and weight up to 18 kg (18-40 lb).

This is one of the most beautiful animals in Egypt. They’re such majestic animals!

  • Common name: Caracal
  • Scientific name: Caracal caracal
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Carnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: Unknown
  • Length: 73-78 cm (29-31 in)
  • Weight: Males: 12-18 kg (26-40 lb), Females: 8-13 kg (18-29 lb)
Caracal

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Egyptian mongoose

This is an Egyptian animal that can be found in the biggest parts of the country, however, not in the desert.

These animals prefer to live in dense vegetation near rivers, lakes, streams, and in coastal areas.

Egyptian mongooses are characterized by their long fur that have a grey to reddish brown color with yellow/brown flecks. It has a pointy snout, small ears and no fur around their eyes.

They can grow up to 60 cm (2 ft) in body length and weight around 2-4 kg (4-9 lb).

  • Common name: Egyptian mongoose
  • Scientific name: Herpestes ichneumon
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Carnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 12 years
  • Length: 48-60 cm (1.7-2 ft)
  • Length of tail: 22-54 cm (1.1-1.9 in)
  • Weight: 1.7-4 kg (3.7-8.8 lb)
Egyptian Mongoose

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Saharan horned viper

The Cerastes cerastes is also known as the Saharan horned viper or the horned desert viper. It’s a venomous viper snake that’s native to Northern Africa and the Middle East.

It’s recognized by its sharp horns above the eyes, and is known to be one of the most dangerous animals in Egypt.

The Saharan horned viper is around 30-60 cm (12-24 in), but can reach a length of 85 cm (33 in). The females are larger than males, however, the males have larger heads and eyes.

They have a patterned skin of yellow, pale grey, pale brown, pinkish or reddish color. The belly is white, the tail have a black tip and they also have semi-rectangular blotches that run down their bodies.

In Egypt they’re called el-ṭorîsha (حية الطريشة).

  • Common name: Saharan horned viper
  • Scientific name: Cerastes cerastes
  • Type: Reptiles
  • Diet: Carnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 10-15 years
  • Length: 30-60 cm (12-24 in)
Saharan Horned Viper

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Long-eared hedgehog

The Long-eared hedgehog is native to Egypt, Libya, Central Asia, and the Middle East. They’re a smaller species of the hedgehog and are recognized by their long ears.

They mainly feed on insects but can also eat a variation of plants.

In Egypt they live in the national parks in green areas where grass and insects are found.

  • Common name: Long-eared hedgehog
  • Scientific name: Hemiechinus auritus
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Insectivore
  • Average life span in the wild: Unknown (7.6 years in captivity)
  • Length: 120-270 mm (4.7-10.6)
  • Weight: 250-400 g (8.8-14 oz)
long-eared hedgehog

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Sand cat

The sand cat is one of the cutest wild animals in Egypt, and also one of the shyest.

Just like camels, sand cats can live for a long time without access to water since they’re well adapted to the extreme desert environment.

They have a pale sand-colored fur which works as a camouflage in the desert – that’s also one of the reasons they’re not seen that often by humans.

Down below you have a cute video of sand cat kittens spotted in the wild, which is very rare.

  • Common name: Sand cat
  • Scientific name: Felis margarita
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Carnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: Unknown (13 years in captivity)
  • Length: 39-52 cm (15-20 in)
  • Weight: 1.5-3.4 kg (3.3-7.5 lb)
sand cat

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Spotted Eagle Ray

When going diving in the ocean outside Egypt you might be lucky to spot a spotted eagle ray.

They are most commonly seen alone, but occasionally in groups.

The Spotted Eagle Ray are recognized by its dark color with white spots or rings. At the base of their long tails they have several venomous barbed stingers.

  • Common name: Spotted eagle ray
  • Scientific name: Aetobatus narinari
  • Type: Cartilaginous fish
  • Diet: Carnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 25 years
  • Length: up to 5 m (16 ft)
  • Wingspan: up to 3 m (10 ft)
  • Weight: 230 kg (507 lb)
Spotted Eagle Rays

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Egyptian blind mole rat

This is a species of rodents that’s found in shrubbish vegetation in Egypt.

Middle East blind mole rats are small animals and weight only 100-200 g (3.5-7.1 oz). They have a light grey fur, only four sharp teeth, and claws on their feet that they use to dig long underground tunnels.

  • Common name: Middle East blind mole rat
  • Scientific name: Spalax ehrenbergi
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Herbivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 20 years
  • Length: 18 cm (7 in)
  • Weight: 100-200 g (3.5-7.1 oz)
Egyptian blind mole rat

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Golden spiny mouse

The golden spiny mouse is one of the smallest animals in Egypt with a body length of 11 cm. They’re common in the hot and dry deserts of Egypt and the Middle East.

They have a reddish-orange fur with pale underside, grey legs with pal feet and black soles. The golden spiny mouse is also recognized by the small white spots under their eyes.

  • Common name: Golden spiny mouse
  • Scientific name: Acomys russatus
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Omnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 3 years
  • Length: 11 cm (4.3 in)
  • Weight: 48 g (1.6 oz)
golden spiny mouse

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Aardvark

The Aardvark is probably one of the most funny-looking animals in Egypt. It’s a medium-sized nocturnal mammal that’s recognized by its long ears and pig-like snout that they use to sniff out food.

During the night they go food hunting – mainly for ants and termites that they dig out using their powerful legs and sharp claws.

  • Common name: Aardvark
  • Scientific name: Orycteropus afe
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Insectivore / Omnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: Unknown (23 years in captivity)
  • Length: 105-130 cm (3.4-4.3 ft)
  • Weight: 60-80 kg (130-180 lb)
animals in russia

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Fat sand rat

This is another species of rodent among the Egyptian animals. Fat sand rats are usually found in sandy deserts or rocky terrains in Egypt.

They are picky about their food and only eat stems and leaves of plants from the amaranth family.

The fat sand rat has gotten its name due to the fact that it easily gets obese and develops diabetes when on a typical rodent diet.

  • Common name: Fat sand rat
  • Scientific name: Psammomys obesus
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Herbivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 1 year
  • Length:  8-13 cm (3-5 in)
  • Weight: 100 g (3.5 oz)
sand rat

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Aardwolf

Aardwolf is the same family as hyena and is an insectivorous animal. This means that they do not prey on large animals, but on insects and larvae.

They mainly feed on termites and can eat up 250.000 termites during one night with their long sticky tongues.

They live in the scrublands of Eastern Africa and are not commonly seen by humans in Egypt.

  • Common name: Aardwolf
  • Scientific name: Proteles cristata
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Carnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 8-10 years
  • Length: 55-80 cm (22-31 in)
  • Height: 40-50 cm (16-20 in) at the shoulder
  • Weight: 7-10 kg (15-22 lb)
animals in egypt

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Sinai agama lizard

The Sinai agama lizard is one of the most beautiful and colorful animals in Egypt. It’s a pretty small lizard with long legs and tail – they can grow to a length of 18 cm (7 in).

The lizard normally have a boring brown color, but during breeding season the males turn into a beautiful blue color to attract females.

Sometimes just a few parts of the body turn blue, while the other stay the normal color.

  • Common name: Sinai agama
  • Scientific name: Pseudotrapelus sinaitus
  • Type: Reptiles
  • Diet: Insectivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 25 years
  • Length: 18 cm (7 in)
Sinai Agama Lizard

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Nubian ibex

This is a goat species that are found in the mountain area of Egypt. Today they are vulnerable and it’s believes to be around 1200 Nubian ibexs left in the wild.

They are around 65-75 cm (2.1-2.6 in) at the shoulder and weight around 50 kg (110 lb). Their fur have a light tan color and their underparts are white.

Nubian ibexs are recognized by their long thin horns that can grow up to 1 m in length.

  • Common name: Nubian ibex
  • Scientific name: Capra nubiana
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Herbivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 10-16 years
  • Height: 65-75 cm (2.1-2.6 ft)
  • Weight: 50 kg (110 lb)
animals in egypt

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African golden wolf

The African golden wolf, also known as the Egyptian jackal, is a canid native to north and northeastern Africa. It’s a species genetically admixed with 72% grey wolf and 28% Ethiopian wolf.

It’s adapted to the desert and is often seen in plains and steppe areas.

They are a small subspecies of the grey wolf and only get 40 cm (15.7 in) in height and weight around 7-15 kg (15-33 lb).

The color of their fur varies depending on season, however they usually have a yellowish to silvery grey color with slightly reddish limbs and black spots on their tails and shoulders.

It looks very similar to the Golden jackal in appearance, but the African golden wold has a more pointed nose and sharper teeth.

  • Common name: African golden wolf
  • Scientific name: Canis anthus
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Carnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 8-9 years
  • Height: 40 cm (15.7 in)
  • Weight: 7-15 kg (15-33 lb)
African golden wolf

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Egyptian vulture

This is a small old world vulture that’s known under the names white scavenger vulture and pharaoh’s chicken. The Egyptian vulture is recognized by its white plumage and yellow/orange facial skin and beak.

They feed mainly on dead animals, but also prey on small mammals, birds, reptiles and insects as well. 

  • Common name: Egyptian vulture
  • Scientific name: Neophron percnopterus
  • Type: Birds
  • Diet: Carnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 21 years
  • Length: 47-65 cm (19-26 in)
  • Weight: 2.4 kg (5.3 lb)
Egyptian Vulture

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Greater Egyptian jerboa

The greater Egyptian jerboa is a species of rodent found in the dry and sandy landscapes of Egypt.

They are around 13 cm (5 in) long + a tail of 20 cm (8 in). Their fur have a sandy/yellowish-brown color and their underparts are white.

Greater Egyptian jerboas are recognized by their short forelimbs and large hind legs.

Most of the tail is naked, except a tuft of hair at the tip. They use their tail to stabilize when standing and moving.

  • Common name: Greater Egyptian jerboa
  • Scientific name: Jaculus orientalis
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Herbivore
  • Average life span in the wild: 4-5 years
  • Length: 13 cm (5 in)
  • Length of tail: 20 cm (8 in)
four-toed jerboa

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Fennec fox

The Fennec fox is a small species of fox that’s found in the deserts of Egypt. They’re the smallest canine species but have the largest ears comparing to their body size.

They use their large ears to control their body temperature as well to hear predators from a far distance.

Fennec foxes are active at night which helps them to handle the heat and stay safe from predators during the day.

  • Common name: Fennec fox
  • Scientific name: Vulpes zerda
  • Type: Mammals
  • Diet: Carnivore
  • Average life span in the wild: Unknown (up to 14 years in captivity)
  • Length: 24-41 cm (9-16 in)
  • Weight: 0.7-1.6 kg (1.5-3.5 lb)
Fennec fox

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More info about Egyptian animals

There are many interesting and beautiful Egyptian animals – from birds and small mammals to big mammals and sea creatures.

Many of the animals are shy, which means that they’re not commonly seen in the wild. However, there are some animals in Egypt that you can be lucky to spot during your trip.

If you spend some time in the wilderness of Egypt I’m sure that you will spot at least 1 or 2 of these animals mentioned above.

Are there any dangerous animals in Egypt?

Yes, there are a few dangerous animals in Egypt that you should know about before traveling. There are various poisonous snakes as well as scorpions. They have different cobra and viper snakes with strong poison that you should be careful about.

However, there are not only dangerous animals in Egypt on land, but in the water as well.

In Egypt there are both lion fishes, scorpionfishes, torpedo rays, conus geographus (an animal that lives inside a shell), and sharks.

Although there are a few dangerous animals in Egypt it’s not so common that people get killed by them. With some knowledge, common sense, and respect for these animals you’re going to be just fine in the wilderness of Egypt.


Do you have any other questions about the wild animals in Egypt? Leave a comment below!

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