Iceland, a small, rugged country in the northern Atlantic Ocean, has a volcanic and geologically tumultuous landscape due to the fact that it is located along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Mountains, glaciers, geysers, and waterfalls are spread throughout its harsh but dreamlike terrain. Because of its rough and severe surroundings, not many animals make their home in Iceland. The fact that the country is located in a remote and isolated part
of the Atlantic Ocean also contributes to its lack of animals and wildlife.
The Icelandic horse is the most common and popular animal found in Iceland. It is a majestic and pure breed that Icelanders are proud of. The Icelandic horse has the intelligence and ability to learn five different kinds of gaits; this skill is what sets it apart from other horses. The Icelandic horse has played a significant role in Iceland's history, having been being used for transportation, warfare, and sheep herding.
Iceland has around 270 different species of birds. It is a migratory paradise. Birds migrate from Europe, Africa, and South America, and often build nests along Iceland's rocky sea-cliffs in which to lay their eggs. The Ptarmigan, however, resides in Iceland all year long; it changes color according to the seasons and shifts in climate. The Puffin
is the most common bird found in Iceland.
The majority of domestic animals in Iceland were brought by the early settlers. The Icelandic fox, a breed of Arctic fox
, however, is native to the country. Its strong, thick coat of fur enables it to survive the harsh and brutal Icelandic winters. Due to over-hunting, it is believed that there are only 3000-4000 foxes left in Iceland.
The types of animals found in Iceland reflect the country's landscape. Its difficult climate and rugged surroundings make survival uncertain for any animal.