Animals and Plants
Nature in Panama – what is growing there?
Due to its location on the land bridge between North and South America, Panama is home to many species of animals and plants from both continents. As in all Central American countries, the biodiversity is particularly great in Panama.
40 percent of the country is covered by forest. Species diversity is particularly high in the tropical rainforest. There are mangrove forests on both sides of the coast. A total of 10,115 plant species have been found in Panama. Kapok trees are just as much a part of it as the Carludovica palm, from whose straw the famous Panama hats are woven. Orchids are also in abundance – in 1200 types. Ferns and bromeliads grow with them in the rainforest.
Which animals live in Panama?
In Panama 229 species of mammals have been counted. These include some endemic species that only live here. They include the Coiba howler monkey and the Coiba agouti, both of which are unique to Coiba Island, and the pygmy sloth, which is unique to Escudo de Veraguas Island.
The largest living rodent in the world is the capybara or capybara. It is a South American animal, but its northernmost range is Panama. This also applies to the forest dog, a wild dog that looks more like a marten. He is a predator.
The largest predator in America is the jaguar, which is also native to Panama. The ocelot or the wrapped bear are much smaller. Other mammals found in Panama are the white-bearded pekari, the Central American tapir, the great anteater and pygmy anteater, the nine-banded armadillo, the white-nosed coati and the Central American agouti.
What’s flying there in Panama?
There are 957 species of birds in Panama. The yellow and breasted macaw is a pretty parrot, otherwise only native to South America. The endangered quetzal also flies merrily through Panama. The beak of the toucan is strikingly colorful. The Montezuma-fronted bird has a red beak and yellow tail feathers. It breeds in colonies with around 30 nests in the trees.
The harpy, the national bird of Panama, is one of the largest birds of prey in the world. There are also many herons, vultures, eagles and buzzards. Of course, there are also numerous waterfowl, such as the brown pelican. A piercing scream raises the jackdaw racket.
And what is creeping in Panama?
Among the 229 reptile species are many snakes like the boa constrictor and iguanas like the green iguana. The male helmet basilisk wears a comb on the back of the head, which gives it its name. American crocodiles and crocodile caimans cavort in the waters. The hawksbill sea turtle lives in the sea. She also comes to the beach in Panama to lay her eggs.
Lots of frogs!
179 amphibians live in the country. They include many frogs such as the strawberry frog, the red- eyed tree frog, the glass frog with transparent skin or the endemic Tabasara frog (Craugastor tabasarae).
How is Panama’s economy doing?
According to historyaah, Panama has one of the fastest growing economies in Latin America. In the Human Development Index, Panama ranks 60th out of 188 countries. Nevertheless, incomes are unevenly distributed. 3 percent of the population lives below the international poverty line and has less than $ 1.90 to live on a day. 23 percent live in poverty.
Services: Finance and the Panama Canal
The economy is primarily based on services: 76.7 percent is generated here. 64 percent of the working population are employed here – for example in trade, tourism or finance. The banking industry in Panama is among the largest in Latin America.
The Panama Canal is the most important economic factor. Administration, operation and maintenance create many jobs – namely around 8,000. Ships that want to cross the canal have to pay a fee. On average, that’s $ 125,000 per ship. The fee is calculated from the size of the ship. In return, they save a detour of 15,000 kilometers. That’s why it’s usually worth it.
In 2007 Panama started theWidening of the Panama Canal so that larger ships can pass it in the future. Construction work was completed in 2016. The capacity for ships has been doubled. Ships with up to 14,000 containers can now travel through the canal. They can be 49 meters wide and have a draft of 15.2 meters.
Many ship owners also register their ships in Panama because the fees for this are particularly low here. You can often see ships flying the Panamanian flag all over the world. This is called flagging out.
At the Atlantic entrance to the Panama Canal there is a large free trade zone near the port city of Colón. Here is the largest free port in America and the second largest in the world. There won’t be any Customs duties levied.
Agriculture: bananas, coffee, sugar cane
17 percent of people work in agriculture. But they only generate 2.5 percent of the gross domestic product. Bananas, coffee and sugar cane are grown on plantations. There are also fields with corn and rice. Pineapples are also harvested.
Shrimp are caught in the fishery. Cattle, pigs and chickens are kept. Bananas, pineapples, watermelons, shrimps, raw sugar and coffee are among the main export goods, along with medicines, gold and petroleum products.
18.6 percent of the population work in industry, which generates 15.5 percent. There are sugar mills, fish processing and breweries. Cement, shoes and soap are also made.