What’s in the Amazon River?
You’ve heard about it all your life, by pictures in textbooks, lectures by teachers, and maybe even conversation among friends. The Amazon River is the largest river in the world by volume. It accounts for 1/5 of the world’s total river flow. It is 120-130 miles wide. If you didn’t know, one-third of all known species in the world live in the Amazon Rainforest. However, the river, have approximately 3,000 recognized species of fish swimming in its waters. The numbers keep growing. Some estimates calculate that there is in fact 5,000 species of fish. Here are some species of fish that live in the Amazon River:
1) River Dolphins - These types of fish can grow up to nine feet long. It is also known as the Boto, or the Amazon River Dolphin. It is a famous legend in Brazil, about this type of dolphin turning into a human.
2) Piranhas - There are large quantities of this fish in the Amazon. This is a popular fish that is known for its sharp teeth, that may attack livestock and even humans. Only a few species attack humans, but most are fish-eaters, and hardly travel in schools.
3) Bull Sharks - This particular species of shark has been reported 2,220 miles up the Amazon River at Iquitos in Peru. These sharks are widely known for their presence in many lakes, creeks, and murky waters and have caused the deaths of innocent people throughout the years.
4) Arapaimas - This is a South-American tropical freshwater fish. It is one of the largest in the world. They have been known to grow to be 15 feet long and weigh over 400 pounds.
5) Anacondas - You may have seen these species in many snake movies. The Anaconda snake has been known to slither in the waters of the Amazon River. It is a large, non-venomous snake that is found in tropical South America. Anaconda actually is a general name for a group of snakes that are in its category. The green anaconda, is one of the largest snakes of the world.
6) Manatees - This is an endangered animal species. It is the Amazon’s largest marine animal and can be over nine-feet long and weigh over a thousand pounds. It’s closest living relative is the elephant.
There are still many species of fish that are just waiting to be discovered. Discovering these new species could be very beneficial to us humans in means for nutrition and even medicine.