We as humans like to think we are the best at everything, even though there is usually a creature in the animal kingdom that is much more agile and strong. While humans are pretty loud, they do not come close to matching the loudest animals on earth. Keep on reading to learn more about the 16 loudest animals and how they use their boisterous sound to their advantage.
16 Loudest Animals
The typical human scream is between 80 to 120 decibels. Knowing this information can help you better understand just how loud the following animals are. Keep in mind that the following list is not in order of who is the loudest, although the create listed as number one is the loudest of all the animals.
1. Sperm Whale
Scientific Name: Physeter macrocephalus
The title of the loudest animal in the world goes to the sperm whale, which can produce clicking sounds of up to 233 decibels. Not only is this the loudest animal, but it also has the largest brain of any animal on this earth.
2. Howler Monkey
Scientific Name: Alouatta
The male howler monkey uses its loud screams, which can reach up to 140 decibels, for various communications, including to warn other howler monkeys of a potential threat and to attack females.
3. Mantis Shrimp
Scientific Name: Stomatopoda
Mantis shrimp are colorful creatures that live in temperate and tropical seas. These small animals have the ability to create a sound that can reach up to 200 decibels. They use this loud sound to scare their prey, which allows them to move in and catch the prey.
4. Moluccan Cockatoo
Scientific Name: Cacatua moluccensis
This bird has a loud scream that can reach up to 129 decibels, which is almost the same amount of decibels that a 747 jet produces. Moluccan cockatoos scream to alert their flock of potential danger, as well as a morning and night calling ritual that can last up to 20 minutes.
5. African Elephant
Scientific Name: Loxodonta
African elephants have the capability to produce a sound that reaches up to 117 decibels, and this sound can be heard up to a six mile radius. The elephants use these sounds to signal different emotions, including danger and anger.
6. Northern Elephant Seal
Scientific Name: Mirounga angustirostris
The male Northern elephant seal can make a sound that reaches up to 126 decibels. They use this sound to warn other male elephant seals to stay away from their territory. The females and young pups of the species also make loud sounds but they don’t generally reach the same decibel level as the males.
7. North American Bullfrog
Scientific Name: Lithobates catesbeianus
Despite its smaller stature, the North American bullfrog can make a sound that reaches up to 119 decibels. They make this sound with their mouths open, and it is essentially a distress scream. If they are caught, this scream will turn into a low growl-like sound.
8. African Cicada
Scientific Name: Cicadoidea
African cicadas are a large genus with over 3,600 species and more are regularly being discovered all the time. No matter what the species, all of the African cicadas have a loud ear-piercing sound, but the Yellow Monday and Green Grocer may be the loudest out of all the African cicadas, creating a sound that can reach up to 120 decibels. This sound also has the ability to carry for over a mile.
Scientific Name: Strigops habroptilus
The kakapo is a flightless bird that looks like a cross between a parrot and an owl. These unusual-looking large birds are considered rare and could potentially become extinct in the near future. They have the ability to create a sound that reaches 132 decibels.
10. Gray Wolf
Scientific Name: Canis lupus
Gray wolves are majestic creatures that travel in packs and use howls to communicate with other wolves and even as a way to mark their territory. These howls can reach up to 115 decibels. Howls aren’t the only sound wolves make, as they can also bark, growl, and whimper.
11. Blue Whales
Scientific Name: Balaenoptera musculus
Blue whales are extremely large sea creatures that create loud sounds that can reach up to 188 decibels. They use these sounds as a way to communicate with other blue whales.
There are several other non natural things in the ocean that produce sounds at the same frequency, such as active sonar, air gun explorations, and ship engines, that can disrupt the natural communications of the blue whale.
12. Greater Bulldog Bat
Scientific Name: Noctilio leporinus
The greater bulldog bat is found in Argentina, Mexico, and the Caribbean Islands, and can screech as loud as 140 decibels. This bat species actually has the highest frequency of all the other bat species. Unfortunately, it isn’t often heard as often as other bats with a lower frequency, since it doesn’t carry throughout the air as well.
Scientific Name: Hippopotamus amphibius
Hippos are massive creatures that live on both the land and water. These semi-aquatic animals are considered dangerous and aggressive.
Even though their diet is made up of mostly plants, hippos have killed more humans than large felines, such as lions. Hippos can also create a sound on both land and water that reaches up to 114 decibels.
14. White Bellbird
Scientific Name: Procnias albus
The white bellbird has the loudest birdsong on the planet, with its mating call reaching 125 decibels. So loud in fact that it could cause permanent damage to a human’s hearing if they were close enough. This species is native to the Amazon rainforests in Northern Brazil and Southern Venezuela where they feed mostly on fruits.
Scientific Name: Panthera leo
Lions are large cats known for their muscular bodies, golden fur, and impressive manes on males. They are apex predators and hunt in prides. Lions are considered to be one of the loudest animals in the world, with a roar that can reach up to 114 dB at close range.
Scientific Name: Hyaenidae
Hyenas are carnivorous mammals known for their scavenging behavior and distinctive laugh-like vocalization. They are considered to be one of the loudest animals in the world, with a vocalization that can reach up to 112 dB and be heard up to 5 km away. Hyenas are social animals and live in clans, which can consist of up to 80 individuals.