The planet Earth is a lovely place to call home. The abundant sun and immense oceans of water have allowed life to flourish on the Earth. 

There are beautiful flora, flowers, and animals wherever we travel on the planet, crucial components of any ecosystem. Flora and faunas life are the two types of beings we see the most on Earth. 

Other than these two, the world is teeming with life forms that are impossible to see with the naked eye. This is why seeing and studying the Earth’s flora, and fauna is so fascinating.

Biologists invented the term flora and fauna to describe a collection of plant and animal species in a given geographic place.

There are some very unique flora and faunas species out there in the wild, so we’ve compiled a list of 20 such species.

1. Rafflesia Arnoldii

Rafflesia Arnoldii
Rafflesia Arnoldii | Image Credit – Flickr
NameRafflesia Arnoldii
Found onThe rainforests of Indonesia, Malaysia, and Bengkulu.
UniquenessWorld’s largest bloom

Let’s start with a huge one; Rafflesia Arnoldii, known as the world’s largest flower, is also one of the world’s rarest. 

Rafflesia Arnoldii, also called the corpse plant, gets its name from the foul odor emittance, similar to decaying flesh

This flower, unlike other flowers, has no pleasant scent and can be found in the deep rainforests of Sumatra, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Bengkulu.

2. Encephalartos Woodii

Encephalartos Woodii
Encephalartos Woodii | Image Ctredit – Flickr
NameEncephalartos woodii
Found onA Botanical garden where was brought from Zululand.
UniquenessIt has gone extinct in the wild, and all specimens are clones.

Encephalartos woodii is one of the world’s rarest plants, having gone extinct in the wild and all specimens being clones

Encephalartos woodii is protected and can only be found in the botanical garden where it was brought from Zululand. 

This plant can be found in South Africa and is assumed to be extinct in the wild, with all clones.

Male and female cycad plants were found in its cycad variety, but no female plants were discovered until recently. 

As a result, no further propagation will be done, and the male plant will be kept.

3. Nepenthes Tenax

Nepenthes Tenax
Nepenthes Tenax | Image Credit – Research Gate
NameNepenthes Tenax
Found onNorthern Queensland
UniquenessOddest-looking plants

The Nepenthes Tenax is considered to be one of the world’s uncommon plants, is one of the oddest-looking plants

Nepenthes Tenax shares many features with the pitcher plant that may reach a height of 100 cm and has a pitcher-shaped flower on top that grows to a height of 15 cm. 

This is a very rare Australian lowland plant that can only be found in northern Queensland. This plant is now listed as an endangered species over the globe.

4. Welwitschia

Welwitschia
Welwitschia | Image Credit – Flickr
NameWelwitschia
Found onAfrica
Uniquenessunique growth pattern in which it only has two permanent leaves throughout its life

Welwitschia is known as the world’s longest-lasting plant, commonly known as the living fossil plant; it is also one of Africa’s rarest plant species. 

The trunk of this strange-looking shrub is woody, thick, short, and hefty. Although some of the largest specimens are considered to be 2000 years old, welwitschias are 500-600 years old. Their lifespan is believed to be between 400 and 1500 years.

5. Pennantia Baylisiana

Pennantia Baylisiana
Pennantia Baylisiana | Image Credit – Flickr
NamePennantia Baylisiana
Found onThree Kings Islands
UniquenessMale and female flowers are produced on different plants.

Pennantia Baylisiana is a world-famous extinct plant that is extremely difficult to come across. 

This achievement has been recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records. Because this contentious plant has so many gender issues, some scientists have attempted to prove whether it is a female or male genesis. 

Pennantia baylisiana is a multi-trunked tree that can reach a height of 5 meters in the wild and 8 meters in cultivation. Because this plant matures slowly, it takes over ten years to reach full maturity.

6. Amorphophallus Titanum 

The Corpse Flower: Behind the Stink | Video Credit – National Geographic
NameAmorphophallus Titanum
Found onWestern sumatra
UniquenessSmelliest plants on Earth

The unbranched inflorescence of Amorphophallus Titanum is the world’s largest. This strange-looking shrub can only be found in the area’s botanical garden, Rose Hills of Huntington. 

This melancholy plant only blooms once in a while and resembles a flower with a crimson exterior and a beige wick inside. 

This is one of the world’s rarest and most attractive plants. The strange short-lived flower structure has the world’s largest unbranched inflorescence and smells like rotten flesh.

7. Ghost Orchid

Ghost Orchid
Ghost Orchid | Image Credit – Flickr
NameGhost orchid
Found onFlorida and Cuba
UniquenessStrange-looking plant with small ghosts hanging from its branches

The ghost orchid, Dendrophylax lindenii, is a strange-looking plant with small ghosts hanging from its branches

This orchid lacks leaves and has an apple aroma, similar to other orchids. It features pale blooms and narrow stems and is one of the world’s rarest orchid species. It’s in the farthest reaches of Florida and Cuba.

8. Dragon’s Blood Tree

Dragon's Blood Tree
Dragon’s Blood Tree | Image Credit – Flickr
NameDragon Blood Tree
Found onYemen
UniquenessThe Unique and odd appearance

With an “upturned, densely packed crown in the shape of an uprightly held umbrella,” the dragon blood tree has a unique and odd appearance. 

When viewed from below, the Dragon Blood Tree has the shape of a mushroom. You’ll need to fly to Yemen, rent a boat, and visit the island of Socotra to see this uncommon tree. 

The sap of this tree is as red as blood, and it can only be found on a single island off the coast of Yemen.

9. Giant Water lily

Giant Water lily
Giant Water lily | Image Credit – Flickr
NameGiant Water Lily
Found onGuyana and tropical South America
UniquenessThe biggest member of the water lily family

With its massive floating lily pads, Giant Water Lily is a better name for this plant than Amazon Water Lily, Royal Water Lily, or Amazon Water Platter. 

Its pads can span up to eight feet across, making it the largest member of the water lily family. 

It features pink blossoms with a wonderful sweet pineapple-like aroma, unlike many of these other plants. 

It’s also a little nicer. Its flowers expand and close, capturing beetles overnight before releasing them the next day to finish the pollination process.

10. Dionaea muscipula

Dionaea muscipula
Dionaea muscipula | Image Credit – Flickr
NameDionaea muscipula
Found onEast Coast of the United States in North Carolina
UniquenessExpand their jaws wide and protrude stiff hairs to function as a trigger for any unsuspecting bug that may land

Given how well known it has become in recent years around the world, this is perhaps one of the most interesting plants that many of us have seen in person. 

It is, in reality, one of the most widely grown and simple-to-grow carnivorous plants.

Venus flytraps obtain their nutrition from gases in the air and soil, just like other plants. They do, however, eat insects to complement these minerals. 

They expand their jaws wide and protrude stiff hairs to function as a trigger for any unsuspecting bug that may land

The imprisoned shuts, and digestive fluids work their magic as soon as the plant detects an insect.

11. Capybara

Capybara
Capybara | Image Credit – Flickr
NameCapybaras
Found onAll over South America
UniquenessSocial species that can live in groups of up to 100 

Capybaras are the world’s largest living rodents, and they may be found all over South America. 

It is a very social species that can live in groups of up to 100, but most of the time, it is found in groups of 10–20 individuals. 

Capybaras are hunted for their flesh and hide, as well as the grease from their thick fatty skin. 

They’re frequently seen serving as perches for a variety of birds, which adds to their odd appearance.

One fact about Capybaras that may surprise you is that they are quite swift, capable of running as fast as a horse if necessary. 

They can also stay immersed for up to five minutes, which they have been observed doing to avoid predators.

12. Pangolin 

Pangolin 
Pangolin | Image Credit – Wikimedia Commons
NamePangolins
Found onAfrica and Asia
UniquenessHave the most vertebrae of any animal

Pangolins are strange-looking creatures that resemble armored anteaters. Scaly anteaters are another name for pangolins. 

Surprisingly, they are more closely related to dogs, cats, and even seals than to the creatures; they most closely resemble anteaters and armadillos.

Pangolins are actually rather cute, with their beady eyes and large feet and, of course, their habit of curling up into a ball when frightened. 

Pangolins are also one of a kind in that they have the most vertebrae of any animal.

Sub-Saharan Africa is a fantastic region to look for pangolins, as there are three different subspecies.

Unfortunately, because of widespread illegal hunting and poaching for their meat and scales, several pangolin species have become severely endangered in Africa and Asia.

13. Shoebill

Shoebill
Shoebill | Image Credit – Flickr
NameShoebill
Found onTropical East Africa, from South Sudan to Zambia.
UniquenessFoot-long bill is similar to a Dutch clog

A big stork-like bird, the shoebill is also known as whale head, whale-headed stork, or shoe-billed stork. 

The bill of the shoebill stork gives it its name, which is shaped like a shoe. Its overall shape is similar to that of a stork, and it was previously categorized with storks in the order Ciconiiformes based on this morphology, which makes it unique. 

However, genetic evidence places it in the Pelecaniformes with pelicans and herons. Adults are mostly grey, whereas juveniles are browner. It inhabits huge marshes in tropical east Africa, from South Sudan to Zambia.

14. Armadillo Girdled Lizard

Armadillo Girdled Lizard
Armadillo Girdled Lizard | Image Credit – Flickr
NameArmadillo Girdled Lizard
Found onThe desert areas along South Africa’s western coast look like a miniature dragon.
UniquenessRoll up to shield themselves from danger.

Armadillo Girdled Lizard is only found in the desert areas along South Africa’s western coast looks like a miniature dragon. 

This likeness is particularly striking when they roll up to shield themselves from danger, which is how they got their name.

Another fascinating fact about Armadillo Girdled Lizards is that they are one of the few lizard species that give birth to live young, and there is evidence that the females may even feed their young, which is rarer.

15. Magnificent frigatebird

Magnificent frigatebird
Magnificent frigatebird | Image Credit – Flickr
NameMagnificent frigatebird
Found onTropical and subtropical waters off the coast of North America, particularly between northern Mexico and Peru on the Pacific coast and Florida and southern Brazil on the Atlantic coast.
UniquenessAssault other birds in flight and even try to steal their food on occasion.

The magnificent frigatebird can be found in tropical and subtropical waters off the coast of North America, particularly between northern Mexico and Peru on the Pacific coast and Florida and southern Brazil on the Atlantic coast. 

They’re known as man-o’-war’ birds since they like to assault other birds in flight and even try to steal their food on occasion.

The large crimson pouch on the males’ chests, which they pump up to try to attract a mate, is what makes these birds truly bizarre.

16. Fossa

Fossa
Fossa | Image Credit – Flickr
NameFossa 
Found onThe forests of Madagascar, an African island in the Indian Ocean.
UniquenessResemble a smaller version of a huge felid like a cougar, but with a slim body, powerful limbs, and a tail that is nearly as long as the rest of the body.

These cat-like animals resemble a smaller version of a huge felid like a cougar, but with a slim body, powerful limbs, and a tail that is nearly as long as the rest of the body

Its mongoose-like head, which is considerably longer than that of a cat, earns it a spot on this list—though, like the pangolin, it is a solitary animal. 

Fossa eats mostly lemurs, and it is the only carnivore on Madagascar large enough to consume adult lemurs.

17. Sloth

Sloth
Sloth | Image Credit – Flickr
NameSloths
Found onTropical rain forests and South America
UniquenessHave additional vertebrae at the base of their neck that allows them to rotate their heads 270 degrees

Sloths reside in the tropical rain forests of Central and South America, where they are lethargic tree-dwellers. 

Their expressions are slightly glum, and they appear to be smiling from some angles. 

Sloths have additional vertebrae at the base of their neck that allow them to rotate their heads 270 degrees

Their sluggishness is related to their slow metabolism, which is a result of their leaf diet, as well as the fact that it is supposed to assist them in avoiding discovery by predators who hunt by sight. Sloths have a very low digestion rate and sleep for 15 to 20 hours every day.

18. Velvet ants

Velvet ants
Velvet ants | Image Credit – Flickr
NameVelvet ants
Found onLawns and meadows
UniquenessSolitary wasps heavily covered with short hair.

Velvet ants appear to be giant hairy ants, but they are wasps. They vary from ants in that their thorax and abdomen are only slightly constricted, and their antennae are straight rather than elbowed. 

They are frequently spotted in lawns and meadows, as well as in buildings. As the name implies, these solitary wasps are heavily covered with short hair.

The males have two sets of black wings that are translucent. The females have no wings and are often mistaken for ants.

19. Pink Fairy Armadillo

Pink Fairy Armadillo
Pink Fairy Armadillo | Image Credit – Flickr
NamePink Fairy Armadillo
Found onCentral Argentina
UniquenessPink robe backside, Small enough to accommodate in the palm of a human hand

The Pink Fairy Armadillo is established in central Argentina, where it can be found in sand dunes, scrubby grasslands, and sandy plains. 

These tiny armadillos, which are small enough to fit in the palm of a human hand, are nocturnal and burrow under the Earth.

20. Maned wolf

Maned wolf
Maned wolf | Image Credit – Flickr
NameManed wolves
Found onParts of Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina, Bolivia, and Peru
UniquenessSeem like a fox or a wolf, but they are neither

Maned wolves seem like foxes or a wolf, but they are neither. These long-legged beauties belong to their own genus, and they are linked to wild dogs, foxes, wolves, and all other canid species.

They are solitary creatures with big ears who, unlike many other hunters, are omnivorous. In fact, their diet may consist entirely of vegetable materials. 

This undoubtedly contributes to their oddity, yet despite their oddity, we think these canids are quite lovely. Parts of Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina, Bolivia, and Peru are home to maned wolves.

Conclusion

Hundreds of thousands of plant and fauna species can be found all over the world. 

Flora and fauna bring forth the genuine beauty of the Earth and allow mankind to travel between two worlds in one. 

Because flora and fauna play an important role in maintaining a healthy ecosystem, it’s only natural that we take steps to protect them so that humans can continue to benefit from them in the future.

Rishu Shakya, a bachelor’s degree graduate in Business Information Management, holds an extraordinary empathy towards mother nature and her ecosystem. She has always been captivated by green Earth and its charm. She regards spreading awareness about clean energy and sustainable development as her passion as well as responsibility. She believes her compassion about the Earth and human relationships will undoubtedly assist our planet to be a better place.