What Animals Live in the River Ganges?

The River Ganges contains numerous animals, including amphibians, reptiles, birds, fish and the Ganges River dolphin. Hundreds of species reside in the waters of the Ganges River, live in the river basin and reside in surrounding habitats. Species include crustaceans, reptiles and mammals; some creatures exist only in the Ganges River and classify as threatened or endangered.

The Ganges River originates in the Himalayan Mountains. It flows through Nepal, China, India and Bangladesh. The Ganges River supports more than 100 types of fish species, nearly 100 different amphibians, 5 crustaceans and various reptiles and birds. Some iconic species live in the Ganges River, including Panthera tigris, a breed of tiger living only in the mangrove forests surrounding the Ganges.

The Ganges River contains the Ganges River dolphin, a small mammal cetacean, or marine mammal, resembling the Indus River dolphin. Ganges River dolphins have long, narrow snouts and outer coats in brown or gray colors. Female river dolphins grow slightly larger than males. These dolphins swim on their sides when moving through the water, and lack good eyesight. They consume fish living in the Ganges as do Gharial crocodiles. Gharial crocodiles, also called Gavial crocodiles, live only in the Indian portion of the Ganges River. They classify as the longest crocodiles, having long snouts with sharp teeth and reside along the sandy river banks.