The dry tsingy are full of strangely shaped succulents such as euphorbia and pachypodium, while the sheltered intervening canyons are filled with leafy cassias, figs, baobabs and other trees typical of dry deciduous forest.
Of the area’s more than 10 species of lemur, the most numerous are crowned, Sanford’s and northern sportive lemurs. Tenrecs and ring-tailed mongooses are also common, the latter particularly around campsites where they come in search of food (make sure you pack everything away).
Over 90 species of bird have been identified in the reserve, including the orange-and-white kingfisher, crested coua, Malagasy fish eagle, crested wood ibis and banded kestrel. Many of the park’s guides are keen birders and will relish the opportunity to tell you about them.
Fourteen of Madagascar’s 33 species of bat live here, of which you’re bound to see at least half a dozen (no vampires!) in the park’s numerous caves.
And finally, one animal you’re very likely to see, even though you’d probably rather not, is the scorpion: they thrive in Ankarana, living under rocks and logs. To make sure that you find them, rather than them finding you, don’t leave your bag on the forest floor and check where you sit. Campers will have to be especially careful with their shoes and when packing their tent.