The Bale Mountains is home to some of Ethiopia’s most protected and unique animals – the Mountain Nyala, Menelik’s Bushbuck & the Simien Wolf.
Amphibian genera restricted to Ethiopia include a variety of unique toads and frogs – including the Tiny River Frog, Kouni Valley Striped Frog, the Bale Mountains Frog and the Ethiopian Banana Frog (a vulnerable species living in altitudes of 1700-2750 metres, on both sides of the Rift Valley in the highlands).
The Simien Mountains is the greatest place on the planet to see the mighty Lammergeier also known as the Bearded Vulture which uses its stunning wingspan, which can reach 3 m, to lift large animal bones into the sky and drop them to shatter the bones and eat the marrow. Over 920 birds have been seen in Ethiopia and 23 of these are endemic including the Abyssinian Longclaw and the Blue-winged Goose and the rarest bird in the world - the Nechisar Night Jar.
Reptiles only found in Ethiopia include the Bale Mountains Heather Chameleon & Two-horned Chameleon and the Ethiopian Mountain Chameleon. Endemic species also include the striking Ethiopian House Snake & Mountain Adder, as well as several lizards and a leaf-toed gecko.
Ethiopia is home to over 280 mammal species – 40 of which are endemic to Ethiopia. These endemics are relatively modest in terms of size – mammals such as shrews, bats and rodents populate most of the endemic species group. However, among these are the more remarkable species; including the Simien or Ethiopian Wolf, Mountain Nyala, Bale Monkey (popular in the Harenna Forest), Gelada (baboon with a stunning lion-like mane), the Bale Mountains Vervet and the Walia Ibex (sub-Saharan Africa’s only indigenous goat).
Ethiopia also boasts small numbers of buffalo and elephant, as well as a subspecies of lion – identifiable by the male's large, unusual black mane.
Among Ethiopia’s extraordinary fauna you’ll find a variety of beautiful endemic butterflies, moths, dragonflies, ants, flower beetles and damselflies.