Directory of All Animals That Start With V – Habitat, Diet, Lifespan, Fun Facts and More!

Animals That Start With V

With 26 letters in the English Alphabet, today we are going with the letter V, the 22nd letter in the alphabet. So we are here with a comprehensive list of animals with names that start with V!

We are on a mission to list animals alphabetically. Today’s objective is simple; we will list animals with V as the first letter in their names. So if you would love to be a part of this journey, keep reading and learn more about animals that live alongside us in this big blue ball we call home.

List of Animals That Start with V by Classes

Many animal names start with V. These are found worldwide and are all unique in their ways. So without further adieu, here are some of the most common animals named with V categorized into types as Mammals, Birds, Reptiles, Amphibians, Fishes, and Invertebrates.

Mammals That Start With Letter V

Birds That Start With Letter V

Reptiles That Start With Letter V

Amphibians That Start With Letter V

Insects and Invertebrates Beginning with V

List of Animals That Start With V: Classification, Behavior, and Facts

Now, let’s learn more about some common animals that start with V. Here, we will discuss about their habitat, diet, lifespan and how to identify them.

1. Vizsla

Vizsla looking at a distance

Scientific name: Canis lupus familiaris

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 12-15 years

Habitat: Vizslas are household dogs widely reared as human companion animals. They are adaptable to various living conditions but require regular exercise and mental engagement to stay healthy.

Diet: Usually, these breeds require high-quality dog food. The food should be a balance of protein, healthy fats and carbohydrates, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals.

Fun Fact: Vizslas are often called “Velcro dogs.” This is because of their attachment style, forming strong bonds with their owners, and preferring to stay close to them.

Vizslas are medium-sized, sleek, and muscular dogs. Their fur is a smooth reddish-golden. They have long-hanging ears and amber or brown eyes. Vizslas are affectionate, active, and trainable, making them excellent choices as household or hunting companions.

2. Vulture


Scientific name: Cathartes aura

Type of animal: Bird

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 15-20 years

Habitat: Vultures are found in various habitats across North, Central, and South America. They prefer open areas such as forests, grasslands, deserts, and scrublands.

Diet:  Vultures are scavengers and primarily feed on carrion (dead animals). They play an important ecological role by cleaning up carcasses and preventing the spread of disease.

Fun Fact: Vultures lack a vocalization apparatus called the syrinx, so they can only make hissing or grunting sounds. They are highly social birds and often gather in groups, called a “wake” or “committee,” to roost, soar, or search for food.

Vultures have a unique defense mechanism when threatened. They can vomit or regurgitate partially digested food, which not only lightens their weight for a quick takeoff but also emits a foul odor that deters potential predators. Their bald head helps them maintain cleanliness while feeding on carrion and prevents bacteria and parasites from clinging to their feathers.

3. Vole

Bank vole (Myodes glareolus; formerly Clethrionomys glareolus). Small vole with red-brown fur in the backyard grass field

Scientific name: Microtus

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 1-2 years

Habitat: Grasslands, meadows, forests, and wetlands. They make their own burrows underground and prefer areas with dense vegetation.

Diet: These herbivorous rodents feed on plant-based food such as grass, roots, stems, and seeds. 

Fun Fact: Voles can produce 3-10 litters yearly, with 3-6 pups in each litter. These rodents are excellent swimmers as well as climbers.

In appearance, they resemble mice or hamsters. Round bodies, short legs, and short tails. Its fur color varies between brown, gray, or black among its various species. Living in elaborately dug-out burrows underground, voles are most active during the dawn and dusk.

4. Viper

Viper snake

Scientific name: Viperidae 

Type of animal: Reptile

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 10–20 years

Habitat: Terrestrial and arboreal environments such as – Deserts, forests, grasslands, and rocky areas.

Diet: Carnivorous, feeding small mammals, birds, lizards, and other reptiles. 

Fun Fact: Vipers have heat-sensing pits between their eyes and nostrils. This allows them to hunt warm-blooded prey accurately, even in the dark.

Triangular-shaped head, narrow neck, hollow-retractable fangs, rough-keeled scales. Generally, Vipers are slow-moving but can strike with incredible speed in the face of threats.

5. Vaquita


Scientific name: Phocoena sinus

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: Around 20 years

Habitat: These mammals are found in shallow, murky coastal waters. In particular, the shallow and murky waters of the Northern Gulf of California, Mexico, and Upper Gulf of California Biosphere Reserve regions.

Diet: Vaquita is carnivorous and consumes small fish, squid, and crustaceans.

Fun Fact: Vaquitas are called the “panda of the sea” because they resemble the giant panda. Being the endangered species they are, less than 10 of their kind remain in the wild.

These species of porpoise have small, stocky bodies, rounded faces, dark rings around their eyes, dark patches on their lips, a grayish-blue dorsal side, and a lighter ventral side. Vaquitas are generally shy and flee at the sight of human presence. Their small size and unique markings separate their identity from other porpoise species.

6. Vampire Squid

Vampire Squid

Scientific name: Vampyroteuthis infernalis

Type of animal: Invertebrate

Phylum: Mollusca

Average lifespan: 2 – 3 years.

Habitat: Deep-sea environments – 600 to 3,000 feet below the ocean surface.

Diet:  They are omnivores; they like eating marine detritus, snow, and small invertebrates. 

Fun Fact: Given the vampire squid’s name, it is neither a true squid nor a true vampire. It possesses remarkable bioluminescent abilities to deter threats in the darkness of the deep sea.

Gelatinous body, web-like reddish-brown skin, Large reddish eyes, cloak-like webbing between each arm. When threatened, they invert their posture and webbing into an umbrella shape. They are well-adapted to the vast depths of the deep-sea environment.

7. Vampire Bat

Vampire Bat

Scientific name: Desmodus rotundus

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 6-8 years

Habitat:  Vampire bats are found in tropical forests, grasslands, and even Central and South American human settlements. They prefer to reside in dark caves, abandoned buildings, and trees with their colony.

Diet: Vampire bats have a hematophagous diet. Meaning they are exclusive feeders of the blood of other animals. 

Fun Fact: They can make small, painless incisions in the skin of their prey to drink the blood flowing out. Vampire bats have a unique social structure where they regurgitate blood to feed other colony members who can’t manage their food. 

Small to medium-sized bats, 7 to 8 inches of wingspan, short-conical muzzles, sharp, elongated incisor teeth, and dark fur. Vampire bats are nocturnal and have excellent night vision. Their feeding behavior and social structure within their colonies make them easily distinguishable.

8. Velvet Ant

Velvet Ant

Scientific name: Mutillidae

Type of animal: Insect

Phylum: Arthropoda

Average lifespan: 1 year (on average)

Habitat: Velvet ants prefer inhabiting Grasslands, forests, and deserts. In the case of open areas, they prefer places with sandy or dry soil.

Diet: These insects are Nectar feeders. Because they consume the sugary nectar produced by flowers.

Fun Fact: Even though their name says ants, velvet ants are actually wingless wasps. 

Velvet ants are in length 0.3 to 1 inch (0.75 to 2.5 cm). Their bodies are covered with dense, velvety hair, ranging from colors of black, red, and orange to yellow. The males are winged with a more wasp-like appearance, while the females are wingless. They are known for their solitary nature, defensive behavior, and powerful sting.

9. Vinegaroon


Scientific name: Thelyphonida

Type of animal: Arachnid

Phylum: Arthropoda

Average lifespan:  4 to 7 years

Habitat: Vinegaroons prefer warm and arid regions like deserts and scrublands. Habitats with loose soil or sand are more convenient for them as they take shelter in rock crevices or burrows.

Diet: Vinegaroons are nocturnal predators who feed on insects, spiders, centipedes, etc. 

Fun Fact: With no correlation to vinegar, Vinegaroons earned their name because of the vinegar-like scent emitted from their defensive spray. Which can be mistaken for vinegar but is actually made up of acetic acid. They use their pincers to catch and inject digestive enzymes into their prey.

Vinegaroons have a flattened body and long segmented tail, black or dark brown in color. Large, powerful pincers at the front of their body catch and immobilize their prey. They are nocturnal creatures. Non-aggressive toward humans in general, when threatened, they will raise their tails and hiss as a sign of warning.

10. Vicuna


Scientific name: Vicugna vicugna

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 15 to 20 years.

Habitat: Vicunas are native to the high altitudes of the Andes Mountains in South America. Alpine grasslands, shrublands, and mountainous terrain at 3,000 to 5,000 meters are conditions and regions Vicunas prefers to inhabit.

Diet: Vicunas are herbivorous mammals. They graze on grasses and vegetation in high altitudes.

Fun Fact: Vicunas’ specialized red blood cells enable them to utilize the limited oxygen available in high elevations efficiently.

Vicunas are small-sized with a slender build and agile movements. Their long, thin legs are perfect for moving in rugged terrains. They adapt to the cold alpine conditions with their wooly light brown or reddish-brown fur and undersides of lighter color. They are very social and form herds consisting of females, their young, and a dominant male.

11. Velvet Worm

Velvet Worm

Scientific name: Onychophora

Type of animal: Invertebrate

Phylum: Onychophora

Average lifespan: Velvet worms typically live for several years in the wild, with some being recorded to live up to 5-6 years.

Habitat: Velvet worms prefer moist environments of tropical forests, damp leaf litter, and caves. They prefer habitats where humidity levels are high.

Diet: Velvet worms are carnivorous creatures. They feed on small invertebrates such as insects, spiders, worms, etc.

Fun Fact: Velvet worms can regenerate their lost or severed body parts. Their specialized mouthparts inject a paralyzing venom into their prey in their unique hunting approach to subdue them.

Velvet worms have long, slender bodies covered in soft and velvety bristles and numerous pairs of short, stumpy legs. They move, making a wave-like motion. They are primarily nocturnal creatures and have a secretive nature. 

12. Virginia Opossum

Virginia Opossum

Scientific name: Didelphis virginiana

Type of animal:  Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 2-4 years

Habitat: Virginia Opossums are highly adaptable and can be found in a variety of habitats, including forests, woodlands, swamps, and urban areas. They are primarily found in North America, ranging from southern Canada to northern Costa Rica.

Diet: Opossums are omnivorous. They feed on various food items, including fruits, nuts, seeds, insects, small vertebrates, carrion, eggs, and even garbage.

Fun Fact: Virginia Opossums are the only marsupial species found in North America. These creatures exhibit a defensive behavior known as “playing possum.” They feign death by becoming completely still, closing their eyes, and even emitting a foul-smelling odor to deter predators.

Virginia Opossums have stocky bodies covered in coarse grayish-brown fur with a lighter-colored face and belly. They possess a long, hairless, and prehensile tail that aids in climbing. Their ears are large and rounded, and they have a pointed snout. 

13. Vireo


Scientific name: Vireo olivaceus

Type of animal: Bird

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan:  Up to 10 years or more.

Habitat: Vireos are primarily found in North and South America. They inhabit various habitats, including forests, woodlands, and thickets. Some species are migratory and travel long distances to breed and winter in different regions.

Diet: Vireos are insectivorous birds, meaning they primarily feed on insects. They forage for insects among the foliage of trees and shrubs, gleaning them from leaves and branches. They also consume small fruits and berries.

Fun Fact: Vireos are known for their beautiful, melodious songs. They use their songs to establish territory, attract mates, and communicate with other individuals. Vireos are generally monogamous, forming long-term pair bonds with a single mate during the breeding season.

Vireos have small, compact bodies with short wings and a slender bill. Their plumage can vary but often includes shades of green, yellow, and white. Some species may have distinctive eye rings or wing bars that add to their visual appeal. 

14. Viceroy Butterfly

Viceroy Butterfly

Scientific name:  Limenitis archippus

Type of animal: Insect

Phylum:  Arthropoda

Average lifespan: a few weeks to a few months.

Habitat:  Viceroy Butterflies are found in various habitats across North America, including forests, meadows, marshes, and gardens.

Diet: Viceroy Butterflies primarily feed on the leaves of trees and shrubs.

Fun Fact: Viceroy Butterflies are beneficial pollinators, as they visit flowers to feed on nectar. Adult Viceroy Butterflies are strong fliers and can travel long distances in search of food and suitable habitats.

The Viceroy Butterfly has a wingspan of approximately 2.5 to 3.5 inches. Their upper wings are orange with black veins and white spots, mimicking the coloration of the Monarch Butterfly. The hind wings’ distinct black line sets them apart from Monarchs.

15. Vervet Monkey

Vervet Monkey

Scientific name: Chlorocebus pygerythrus

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan:  10-12 years

Habitat: Vervet Monkeys are native to various regions in Africa, including savannas, woodlands, forests, and mountainous areas. 

Diet: Vervet Monkeys are omnivorous and feed on fruits, leaves, flowers, and seeds. They also consume insects, small vertebrates, and bird eggs.

Fun Fact: Vervet monkeys are highly social animals and live in large groups called troops. Troops can consist of several dozen individuals and are organized with a dominant male as the leader.

Vervet Monkeys are excellent climbers and spend significant time in trees. They have long, agile limbs and a long tail that helps balance.  They are very adaptable and can be found in both rural and urban environments.

16. Viperfish


Scientific name: Chauliodus spp.

Type of animal: Fish

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 15-30 years

Habitat: Viperfish are found in the deep ocean waters around the world. They reside in the mesopelagic and bathypelagic zones, where light penetration is minimal and temperatures are cold.

Diet: The Viperfish’s diet primarily consists of other smaller fish and invertebrates, including squid, crustaceans, and smaller fish species.

Fun Fact: The Viperfish’s long, luminescent photophores on their bodies and lower jaws aid them in attracting prey in the darkness of the deep sea. These bioluminescent lights help them lure smaller fish and other prey closer, making them easier to catch.

Viperfish are known for their large mouths and long, fang-like teeth that help them capture and hold onto their prey. They have a unique adaptation called a hinged skull, allowing them to open their mouths at an incredibly wide angle to accommodate larger prey. These fish have a highly elastic stomach that can stretch to accommodate large meals.

17. Vine Snake

Vine Snake

Scientific name: Ahaetulla spp.

Type of animal: Reptile

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 5-10 years

Habitat: Vine Snakes are found in tropical and subtropical regions of Asia, including India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, and the Philippines. They inhabit various habitats, including forests, jungles, and wooded areas with dense vegetation. 

Diet: Vine Snakes are insectivorous. Their diet consists of frogs, lizards, birds, and various arthropods, including grasshoppers, crickets, and spiders.

Fun Fact: Vine Snakes have evolved the ability to flatten their bodies, similar to vipers, to appear larger and more threatening to potential predators or threats.  They spend much of their time in trees and bushes.

Vine Snakes have long, slender bodies ranging from 2-6 feet, depending on the species. They have a thin head with large eyes and a rounded snout. Their scales are typically green or brown, which helps them blend into their arboreal environment. 

18. Vanga


Scientific name: Vangidae

Type of animal: Bird

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: A few years.

Habitat: Vanga is found in forested habitats, including rainforests, dry deciduous forests, and spiny forests. Different species of Vangas have specific habitat preferences, ranging from lowland areas to montane forests.

Diet: Vanga are omnivorous. Their diet includes insects, spiders, small vertebrates, fruits, nectar, tree sap, etc.

Fun Fact: Male and female Vangas often have different plumage, with males being more colorful and distinctive than females

Vanga has medium-sized bodies with a length ranging from 5-10 inches. y have a wide range of plumage colors and patterns, including combinations of black, white, gray, and shades of brown. Their beaks exhibit various shapes and sizes, depending on the species, ranging from stout and hooked to slender and curved.

19. Volcano Rabbit

Volcano Rabbit

Scientific name: Romerolagus diazi

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 2-3 years

Habitat: Volcano Rabbits inhabit grasslands, meadows, and the dense vegetation of montane forests, often near the base of volcanoes. 

Diet:  Volcano Rabbits’ diet includes grasses, herbs, and other plant materials. They are specialized herbivores, grazing on the vegetation available in their habitat.

Fun Fact: Volcano Rabbits are one of the smallest rabbit species in the world. They are excellent jumpers and can leap up to 3 meters.

Volcano Rabbits have a compact body shape with short limbs and a small, round head. They measure around 9-11 inches. Their fur coloration can vary from grayish-brown to reddish-brown, blending with the surrounding vegetation. These rabbits have relatively short ears and a short, fluffy tail.

20. Variegated Squirrel

variegated squirrel

Scientific name:  Sciurus variegatoides

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 6-8 years

Habitat: Variegated Squirrels are native to the tropical and subtropical regions of Central America, including countries like Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. They are found in forested habitats, including rainforests, cloud forests, and deciduous forests.

Diet:  Variegated Squirrels are omnivorous. Their diet consists of various plant materials such as fruits, nuts, seeds, flowers, leaves, insects, bird eggs, and small vertebrates.

Fun Fact: Variegated Squirrels are known for their acrobatic abilities and agility in tree canopies. They are skilled climbers and jumpers, capable of traversing between trees with remarkable ease.

Variegated Squirrels have a distinctive coloration, mixing gray, brown, black, and white fur. The color patterns vary among individuals, but they typically have a variegated or mottled appearance, providing excellent camouflage in their forested habitat.

21. Visayan Spotted Deer

Visayan Spotted Deer

Scientific name: Rusa alfredi

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum:  Chordata

Average lifespan: 10-12 years

Habitat: Visayan Spotted Deer are native to the rainforests and lowland forests of the Visayan Islands in the central Philippines. They inhabit areas with dense vegetation and access to water sources.

Diet: Visayan Spotted Deer are herbivorous, consisting mainly of leaves, grasses, young shoots, and fruits.

Fun Fact: Visayan Spotted Deer is one of the world’s rarest and most endangered deer species.

The Visayan Spotted Deer gets its name from the distinctive white spots on its dark brown or reddish-brown coat. These spots become less pronounced as the deer matures. They are a medium-sized deer species, with males (bucks) being larger than females (does).

22. Vagrant Shrew

Vagrant Shrew

Scientific name: Sorex vagrans

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan:  1-2 years.

Habitat: Vagrant Shrews are found in various habitats across North America, including forests, grasslands, wetlands, and shrublands. They prefer dense vegetation and abundant ground cover, such as leaf litter, grasses, and fallen logs.

Diet: Vagrant Shrews are insectivores. Their diet primarily consists of small invertebrates such as insects, spiders, worms, and snails. 

Fun Fact: Vagrant Shrews are known for their high-energy lifestyle. They have a rapid heartbeat and are constantly on the move, searching for food to sustain their energetic metabolism.

The Vagrant Shrew has a small, slender body with short legs and a long tail. They have a pointed snout with small, sharp teeth adapted for capturing and consuming prey. Their fur is dense and often has a velvety texture. 

23. Vlei Rat

Vlei Rat

Scientific name: Otomys irroratus

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan: 2-3 years

Habitat:  Vlei Rats inhabit wetland areas, including marshes, swamps, and grassy floodplains, across sub-Saharan Africa. 

Diet: Vlei Rats are herbivores and feed on grasses, sedges, and other aquatic plants. They also consume roots, bulbs, and occasionally fruits.

Fun Fact: Vlei rats are semi-aquatic and are well-adapted to their watery environments.

Vlei Rats have a robust body. They have dense, soft fur that is typically gray-brown or reddish-brown in color. Their tails are long and scaly. They have relatively large, rounded ears, and their eyes are on the sides of their head.

24. Visayan Warty Pig

Visayan Warty Pig

Scientific name: Sus cebifrons

Type of animal: Mammal

Phylum: Chordata

Average lifespan:  10-12 years.

Habitat: The Visayan Warty Pig inhabits the Visayan Islands and various habitats, including primary and secondary forests, grasslands, and agricultural areas. 

Diet: Visayan Warty Pigs are omnivorous. They feed on roots, tubers, fruits, leaves,  insects, worms, and small vertebrates.

Fun Fact: Visayan Warty Pigs are excellent swimmers and are capable of crossing bodies of water in search of food and suitable habitats.

Visayan Warty Pigs have a compact and robust body. Their coloration varies, but they generally have dark brown to blackish hair. Males typically exhibit more prominent warts on their snout compared to females. They have three pairs of facial warts or fleshy protuberances on their snout. These warts are more pronounced in males and play a role in intra-species communication and dominance displays.

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The letter V was a V-ery tricky one! Pun intended. With so many V-arieties and V-ast number of animals out there, we may have missed quite a few on our list. So if we missed any of your favorite animals with V in their names, please let us know, and we will add them to this list asap!

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