Tamandua mexicana (Saussure, 1860) is a medium-sized anteater commonly known as the northern tamandua or oso hormiguero. It has an elongated head and is toothless, with a slender and sticky tongue and a prehensile tail. Its fur has a black patch across the back like a vest worn backward against a pale yellow background. It is present from southern Mexico to the northwest Andes in South America; it also lives in many different forested ecosystems including transformed areas. The International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources classifies T. mexicana as “Least Concern” because it has a wide distribution, presumably large population, and because it is represented in protected areas, as well as anthropogenic ecosystems. In some areas local laws protect T. mexicana from exploitation and habitat destruction.

Author notes

Associate editor of this account was Jamie M. Harris. Editor of this account was Meredith J. Hamilton.