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Want to know more about the animals in the Arctic? Here’s a list of 20 Arctic animals that you can see in the world: 

Arctic Wolf

This is a species of grey wolf native to Canada’s Queen Elizabeth Islands – from Melville Island to Ellesmere Island.

It’s a medium sized wolf recognized by its white fur. Thanks to its thick coat, it can withstand sub-zero temperatures in the cold Arctic climate.

Arctic Wolf

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Beluga Whale

Beluga whales are small and highly social whales living in the Arctic. They are known as “sea canaries” for their way to communicate through whistles, clicks, and chirps.

Some of the best spots to see these Arctic animals is in Churchill, Manitoba, Tadoussac, and Quebec in Canada.

beluga whale

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Walrus

These giants can weight over 2000 kg (4400 lb) and are found in Alaska and east of Russia. However, smaller species are also found in Greenland, Svalbard and some northern regions in Canada.

In addition to their big size, they’re also characterized by their long tusks that they use for fighting, dominance, and to attract mates.

walrus

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Arctic Fox

During winter, the fur of the arctic fox turns into a beautiful white color, which works as a camouflage in the snowy landscapes. The arctic fox is naive to the Arctic regions of the Northern Hemisphere, and are most commonly seen in areas with arctic tundra.

These arctic animals can grow up to 68 cm (27 in) in body length and usually feed on lemmings, voles, ringed seal pups, fish, and various sea birds.

Arctic Fox

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Polar Bear

When it comes to the animals in the arctic, the polar bear is one of the most famous. They are found in both Svalbard in Norway, Greenland, northern Canada and Alaska in the United States.

A male polar bear can reach a body length of 3 m (9.8 ft) and weight up to 450 kg.

polar bear

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Ringed Seal

This is the most common seal in the Arctic and can be seen though the Northern Hemisphere’s arctic oceans.

It’s a relatively small seal that reach a length of 1.5 m (4 ft). They do not have any ears, and are also characterized by their big dark eyes, and pattern of dark spots and light grey rings.

Ringed seal

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Puffin

Puffins are probably the most famous birds living in the Arctic. They are recognized by their brightly colored beaks during breeding season and stocky body with black and white plumage.

There are three species of puffin. The tufted puffin and the horned puffin are found in the North Pacific Ocean, while the Atlantic puffin is found in the North Atlantic Ocean.

puffin

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Bowhead Whale

This is the second largest whale in the world and is found in Arctic and sub-Arctic waters. They are most commonly seen in the seas near Alaska in the United States.

The bowhead whale is believed to be the longest living animals on earth, with a lifespan of up to 200 years.

arctic animals

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Ermine

Ermine, also known as the northern weasel, is a small animal with a long body and short legs. In snowy and winter conditions the fur has a beautiful white color.

These animals are found in the northern subarctic and the Arctic.

Ermine

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Reindeer / Caribou

The reindeer, also known as the caribou, is a species of deer native to the Arctic and subarctic regions of Northern Europe, North America and Siberia.

Reindeers are migratory and move 5000 km (3100 miles) per year. In January to February every year, travelers can witness the migration themselves in Norway, which is an incredible sight. In addition to Norway, it’s also possible to spot these animals in Alaska, Sweden, Iceland, Finland, and Russia.

Reindeer

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Narwhal

Narwhals are known as the unicorns of the sea and are recognized by their long ivory tusk that are present in males and about 15% of the females.

They are found in the coldest waters in the North where the Arctic ice meets the sea. During summer, the best place to spot these animals is in northern Canada and Thule in northern Greenland. They can also be spotted in the waters around Svalbard and Russia all year round.

narwhale

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Harp Seal

The harp seal and their adorable pups are found in Newfoundland in Canada, Greenland, and the White Sea.

The pups are born with a yellow-white fur that turns white after 1-3 days. It stays white for about 2-3 weeks and turns into a more silver-grey color with age.

The best time to spot these arctic animals is between late February and early March. They spend little time on land, and therefore the best time to see them is during mating season.

harp seal

Photo: Shutterstock

harp seal pup

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Muskox

The Muskox was previously found across the arctic, but is now wiped out in many places due to hunting. Today, they’re found in treeless tundra in Arctic North America to Greenland.

Muskoxen are quite big animals can can reach a shoulder height of 1.5 m (5 ft) and weight up to 410 kg (900 lbs).

animals in the arctic

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Humpback Whale

These beautiful animals are not found all year long in the Arctic, but do spend the summers in the Arctic Ocean.

During the summers it’s possible to see these incredible animals in the waters surrounding both Canada and Iceland. They are migratory animals, and migrate up to 8000 km (4970 miles) every year.

A humpback whale can reach a body length of 16 m (52 f) and weight up to 30 metric tons (33 short tons).

animals in the arctic

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Arctic Hare

These cute hares are found in northern Canada down to Newfoundland and along the coast of Greenland. They are most commonly found where there are Arctic tundra at altitudes up to 900 m ().

They grow up to 68 cm (28 in) and weight up to 7 kg (15.5 lbs).

arctic hare

Photo: Shutterstock

Orca

When it comes to the animals in the Arctic, the orca is one of the most known. The orca, also known as the killer whale, is one of the worlds most formidable predators and hunt in packs.

They can be found in all oceans around the world, and are common to see in the Arctic Ocean. An orca can live up to 50 years in the wild.

Orca

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Greenland Shark

The Greenland shark is a large species of shark found in the waters of the North Atlantic Ocean and the Arctic Ocean. They are around 6.5 m (21 ft) long and weight 1000 kg (2200 lb).

An interesting fact about the Greenland shark is that it’s the longest-lived species of vertebrate and can live up to 400 years in the wild.

Greenland Shark

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Snowy Owl

This owl lives further north than any other owl in the world, and is found in the Arctic. It’s recognized by its beautiful white plumage with flecks of black. The long and thick feathers extend over the snowy owl’s bill and toes, which keeps them warm in the cold climate.

Most owls are active at night, but this owl goes hunting during the day – especially in summer.

Snowy Owl

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Bearded Seal

This is the largest species of seal living in the Arctic. Males can weight up to 450 kg (992 lbs) and females can get even heavier. In addition to their big size, they’re also characterized by their long whiskers looking like a beard.

They are most commonly seen on ice floes in the Arctic Ocean giving birth to their pups. This usually happens in April or May every year.

animals in the arctic

Photo: Shutterstock

Canada Lynx

The big feet of the Canada lynx are like snowshoes and helps them when walking through snowy terrain. They are medium-sized cats with a thick fur that keeps them warm in the cold Arctic climate.

The Canadian lynx is most commonly found in northern Canada and Alaska. They are shy animals and are rarely seen by humans. If you would spot a Canadian lynx in the wild, you would be really lucky.

Canada lynx

Photo: Shutterstock


Have you seen any of these Arctic animals in the wild? Leave a comment below!