Animal Articles (Reading Comprehension)

Kids will love learning about their favorite animal species by reading these interesting articles. We have scores of articles covering all types of animals, from aardvarks to zebras.

Most of the worksheets on this page align with the Common Core Standards. To see CCSS connections, simply click the common core icon Common Core.

Mammals
Even though it is sometimes called earth pigs, aardvarks aren't really related to pigs at all.
4th Grade
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Learn about the armored mammals called armadillos, which can be found in various areas throughout North and South America.
5th Grade
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There are nearly a thousand different species of bat in the world today. Most eat insects or fruit, but there is one type- the vampire bat- that drinks blood.
(Approx. Grade Levels: 3-5)
3rd through 5th Grades
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This article contains a list of common beaver questions, such as "What's the difference between a beaver lodge and a beaver dam?" Read to find out how much beavers weigh, what they eat, where they live, and more.
6th Grade
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Bighorn Sheep have horns that weigh up to 30 pounds. Males will battle by ramming each other in the head.
4th Grade
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Learn why camels have humps, how their coat helps them to survive, and other interesting camel facts.
3rd Grade
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Learn about our planet's largest species of rodent, the capybara.
4th through 6th Grades
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Cheetahs are the fastest land animals in the world, but even cheetahs have to be on the lookout for other predators.
5th Grade
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Discover what's unusual about a chipmunk's cheeks, along with other interesting chipmunk facts.
2nd through 4th Grades
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Learn how dolphins and porpoises are alike, and how they're different. This article includes a question page, a Venn diagram, and a vocabulary activity.
4th Grade
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Find out why these strange animals are called elephant seals and learn about their unusual hunting habits.
4th through 6th Grades
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The bushy-tailed, big-eared fennec fox in an amazing species that is adapted to live in desert climates.
4th Grade
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Did you know that flying squirrels can't actually fly? They glide from tree to tree, using a furry membrane like a parachute.
5th through 7th Grades
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Did you know groundhogs are great swimmers?  And they can climb trees too!  They can also bark and whistle.  Learn these and many more interesting facts about groundhogs in this article.
2nd through 4th Grades
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Discover everything you wanted to know about spiny hedgehogs.
3rd through 5th Grades
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The honey badger is arguably the most fearless animal on Earth. It eats porcupines and venomous snakes, raids beehives for honey, kidnaps baby cheetahs, and steals food from hungry lions.
4th Grade
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Hyenas are neither cats nor dogs, but in a family all their own. These fierce scavengers gobble up leftovers left by other animals.
5th Grade
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Discover how jaguars live and hunt, and learn why these beautiful animals are endangered.
4th through 6th Grades
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The cutest mammals in Australia actually have very sharp claws and they spend more time asleep than they do awake.
4th Grade
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Llamas are are very helpful to man.  They work as pack animals that carry heavy goods.  They also provide wool for clothing.  Some even help ranchers protect their sheep from coyotes.
4th through 6th Grades
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Mandrills, with their bright blue and red noses, are perhaps the most colorful mammals in the world.
5th Grade
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Have you ever heard of a barking deer? If you visit South America you may see muntjacs - small deer that like dogs.
4th Grade
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Narwhals are sometimes called "Unicorns of the Sea," but do you know why? It's because they have a nine-foot tusk that looks like a unicorn's horn.
6th Grade
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Orcas, or killer whales, are known as wolves of the sea because of their hunting practices.
5th Grade
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Did you know that an ostrich's eyes weigh weigh twice as much as its brain? Learn interesting facts about ostriches in this nonfiction article. This reading comprehension worksheet is designed for fourth grade level readers and includes reading comprehension questions, vocabulary exercises, and a writing prompt. Learn about the big and exciting ostrich!
4th Grade
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Learn about the unusual life of world's strangest-looking mammal.
4th Grade
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Discover how polar bears have adapted to live in the Arctic.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Learn about the weasel-like animal known as the polecat.
4th Grade
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It rattles like a rattlesnake and it it gives off a fowl odor like a skunk.  What is it?  A porcupine!
2nd through 4th Grades
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This article will teach students about the red kangaroo. Measuring 6 feet tall and weighing 200 pounds, it is the world's largest marsupial.
6th Grade
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Learn many fascinating facts about skunks! Did you know that skunks are actually very shy? Discover this and much more!
2nd Grade
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Learn dozens of fascinating facts about stinky, smelly skunks.
2nd through 4th Grades
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Read about the slow-moving sloth from Central and South America.
4th Grade
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Bears don't wear glasses, but the spectacled bear from South America has circular markings that make it look like it's got spectacles.
4th Grade
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Echidnas are one of only two mammals they lay eggs. Females also have a pouch to carry their babies, just like kangaroos.
5th Grade
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This strange looking animal has four legs, a long snout, large ears,and lurks in the forests of Central and South America.
4th Grade
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The Visayan warty pig is wild pig that is native to the Visayan Islands of the Philippines. It is one of the world's most endangered animals.
5th Grade
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The wolverine is a solitary, but fierce, hunter who lives in snowy, northern climates across the world.
4th Grade
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How to zebras protect themselves from predators? They run, kick, and bite. They even sleep standing up so they're ready to run at any sign of danger.
5th Grade
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Reptiles
Learn how alligators and crocodiles are different and how they're similar.
4th Grade
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Learn the similarities and differences between boas and pythons with this compare/contrast article.
4th Grade
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Chameleons can change color, rotate their eyes, and have toes that are specially adapted for climbing.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Did you know that a king cobra can inject enough venom to kill an elephant? Learn this, and many more fun facts about cobras.
5th Grade
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The desert tortoise lives in the Mojave and Sonara Deserts of the southwestern USA. They get most of their water from food and can live over 50 years.
5th Grade
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Lurking in the deserts of the Southwestern United States is a colorful monster with a forked tongue, big head, and powerful claws.
5th Grade
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The green anaconda is the largest snake in the world! It lives in South American swamps, weighs 500 pounds and eats pigs, deer, and even jaguars!
5th Grade
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Learn tons of fascinating facts about iguanas in this article.
3rd Grade
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Learn tons of fascinating facts about iguanas in this article.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Rattlesnakes are efficient predators, but they can also be prey to larger, desert-dwelling animals. They use their rattle to warn predators of their venom.
5th Grade
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Did you know that sea turtles have been around since the time of the dinosaurs? Learn all about the fascinating world of sea turtles. Discover the names of the seven sea turtle species, learn about the obstacles baby sea turtles face when they hatch, and find out the dangers sea turtles face today.
6th Grade
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A tamandua is an unusual-looking animal with four legs, a long snout, big ears, and a flexible tail.
4th Grade
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The tuatara is a rare reptile found only in New Zealand.  While it looks like a lizard, it's really more closely related to a snake.
5th Grade
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Are dragons real?  You bet they are.  Indonesians know all about the fierce lizard known as the Komodo dragon.
4th Grade
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Birds
The world's smallest bird - the bee hummingbird - can hover in place, fly upside down, and even fly backwards.
4th Grade
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The American bald eagle has such good eyesight, it can spot a fish from a mile away! It is also a national symbol of the United States.
5th Grade
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The flamingo is one of the most recognized birds in the world because of it's unusual body shape and hot-pink feathers.
4th Grade
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Learn about several birds that run and walk and swim instead of fly.
3rd through 5th Grades
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The kiwi is an unusual bird with a long beak, no tail, and long legs. There are five species of kiwis and none of them can fly.
5th Grade
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Owls have special adaptations that allow them to fly without making a sound, and hunt during the dark nighttime hours.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Did you know that all peacocks are male? Female peacocks are called peahens. In this article students will learn many fascinating facts about peafowl.
5th Grade
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Learn about two different penguin species - the Emperor penguin and the Galapagos penguin. One of them lives in frigid Antarctica. The other lives on the tropical Equator.
5th Grade
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The secretary bird is a large, terrestrial raptor from Africa. It eats mice, hares, mongooses, lizards, and even snakes.
4th Grade
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A toucan's colorful bill is certainly beautiful, but did you know that it also helps the toucan in many ways?
5th Grade
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What's the difference between a tom, a gobbler, a hen, and a pult? Find out in this article about wild turkeys.
2nd Grade
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Fish
It's not a bird, nor a plane.  It's a flying fish!  Learn all about these strange animals.
4th Grade
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Look out!  The world's second largest, and most ferocious shark may be swimming in an ocean near you.
3rd through 5th Grades
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The hammerhead shark is one of the fiercest and most dangerous animals in the sea. It uses electroreceptors in its unusual-shaped head to find prey.
4th Grade
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Your students will learn lots of interesting and unusual facts about seahorses when they read this article.
3rd through 5th Grades
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This article has information about sharks and describes why they are endangered.
4th Grade
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Amphibians
Discover the similarities and differences between frogs and toads.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Can your students tell a reptile from an amphibian?  This compare and contrast article will help students learn the differences between these two vertebrate groups.
4th Grade
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Learn all about the fascinating poison dart frog. The Columbian poison dart frog is one of the most toxic species on earth, but did you know poison dart frogs may have the ability to help humans?
6th Grade
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Insects, Spiders, and Bugs
Are grasshoppers a farmer's friend or foe? Actually, both.  Find out how grasshoppers can help and harm humans.
3rd through 6th Grades
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Learn all about leaf cutter ants, and their highly developed insect society.
6th Grade
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Learn how ladybugs got their name, and why some farmers love them.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Find out how to build a mealworm habitat and raise your own darkling beetles.
2nd through 4th Grades
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Find out how monarch butterflies protect themselves and learn about their transformation from caterpillar to butterfly.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Learn the similarities and differences between butterflies and moths.
4th Grade
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Learn all about roly-poly pill bugs, which curl up in a ball to protect themselves.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Pseudoscorpions are tiny, harmless scorpion-like creatures that can sometimes be found in bathrooms.  Read about these interesting arachnids and answer the questions.  (non-fiction)
3rd through 5th Grades
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Do you know what the strongest animal on Earth is? A bear? An elephant? Actually it's the rhinoceros beetle! This large insect can lift 850 times its own weight!
6th Grade
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Tarantulas are different from other spiders because they don't spin webs to trap food and they live in underground burrows.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Find out about three different subgroups of arthropods- insects, arachnids, and myriapods.
4th Grade
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Discover the stink bug - an animal that uses a noxious odor to scare enemies away.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Other Animals
Earthworms have no eyes, no nose, no ears, no bones, no arms, and no legs. They do, however, have very complex bodies.
2nd through 5th Grades
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I bet you didn't know that an octopus can vanish in a cloud of smoke.  It's just one of the unique ways an octopus can defend itself.
3rd through 5th Grades
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A fascinating article about a special type of jellyfish that can revert back to infancy and begin its life all over again.
5th Grade
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Animal Topics
Many animals use camouflage to hide from predators and to avoid being seem while hunting.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Hibernation is when animals slow down for the winter and fall into a sleep-like state. Learn about animal hibernation with this interesting article.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Find out why animals migrate from one place to another.
3rd through 5th Grades
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This passage is about animals who are adapted to sleep during the day and become active during the nighttime hours.
3rd through 5th Grades
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Professor Al Ligator teaches kids about the five groups of vertebrates. Kids will learn all about mammals, reptiles, birds, amphibians, and fish.
3rd Grade
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Compare and contrast three types of animals - herbivore, carnivore, and omnivore.
3rd through 5th Grades
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See also:
Third Grade Reading Comprehension

Third grade stories, articles, passages and poems

Fourth Grade Reading Comprehension Worksheets

Fourth grade reading stories, articles, and poems

Fifth Grade Reading Comprehension Worksheets

Fifth grade reading stories, articles, and poems

Science: Animal Worksheets

Animal (vertebrate) classification worksheets