Panama ’s shape and location—at the southernmost range of many North American species and the northernmost range of many South American species—makes it home to a particularly rich variety of plant and animal life. Sadly, the future of this abundant life is by no means secure: The World Conservation Monitoring Centre’s Red List of threatened animals includes 112 species found in Panama.
A total of 972 species of birds have been identified so far, more than are found in the United States and Canada combined. The country is also home to well over 200 mammal and 200 reptile species, close to 200 amphibian species, and more than 10,000 species of plants. Some of these are found nowhere else on earth.