What animal can jump the highest?

Many people assume that kangaroos are the highest jumping animals to leap across the face of this great green globe, but are they actually right? It's time to take a look at the highest jumping animal in the world – the answer might surprise you!

The kangaroo is very well-known for being excellent at jumping.
The kangaroo is very well-known for being excellent at jumping.  © 123RF/Inus12345

Kangaroos are the poster children of the high jump in the animal world, and it's no wonder. They're virtually synonymous with amazing leaps, thanks to their freakishly strong legs.

But there are other high-jumping animals just as fascinating and strange – and one of them can actually outdo even the kangaroo!

So, what creature holds the animal world record for jumping the highest?

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Let's leap into it!

The Puma is recognized as the highest jumping mammal in the whole world.
The Puma is recognized as the highest jumping mammal in the whole world.  © Unsplash/Priscilla Du Preez

What is the world's highest jumping animal?

The record holder for the world's highest jumping animal is the puma, otherwise known as the cougar or even mountain lion. These large cats are native to America, and are some of the most dangerous creatures found in the US, Canada, Mexico, and countries in South America as well.

Solitary and nocturnal, the puma is constantly on the hunt for food, and has been known to stalk and attack people, as well as other animals. What makes it even more scary, though, is its pure size. These creatures regularly reach about 30 inches in height (standing foot to shoulder), about 6–7 feet in length, and weigh between 120 and 150 pounds.

While considered very dangerous, and certainly not creatures that you'd want to bump into in the wild, they're also extremely important for their natural ecosystems. Considered hypercarnivores, they prey predominantly on deer, elk, moose, and other large mammals. They are also apex predators, as no animal will prey upon the puma (except for, of course, humans).

Their most iconic feature, though, is the power of their remarkable jump. Leaping far into the air, the puma has a great deal of flexibility and maneuverability when it jumps, helping maintain its status as an extraordinary hunter.

How high can the highest hopping animal jump?

The highest jump ever recorded by a mammal was a puma that jumped 23 feet into the air from a standstill. This record was recorded and verified by Guinness World Records, confirming that the puma is officially the highest jumping animal in the entire world. Considering the weight and size of the puma, it is especially impressive that they can jump that high.

In general, a puma's extraordinary jumping ability comes down to the strength of its hind legs. While the example given above (which earned the puma the accolade we are discussing) put the number at 23 feet, even the shortest-hopping puma can jump further than most other animals, often leaping more than 15 feet at a time.

Many pumas are also capable of jumping far distances while holding prey in their mouth, often leaping into trees with their meal, ready for a feed with a view.

Other animals that jump high

Many high-jumping animals are actually bugs, such as the leafhopper.
Many high-jumping animals are actually bugs, such as the leafhopper.  © IMAGO/Wirestock

There are other animals out there that are also very capable jumpers - many of which, in terms of body size to jump height are even more impressive than the puma - what are they, what other animals can jump high?

These are some of the world's highest jumping animals:

  • Red kangaroos
  • Hares
  • Klipspringer
  • Grasshoppers
  • Froghoppers
  • Leafhoppers
  • Jumping spiders
  • Frogs
  • Fleas
  • Dolphins
  • Orcas
  • Impalas
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Of course, this is by no-means a complete list. There are many other animals, from all walks of life, that can jump further than your average human. Still, these bad-boys are some of the most impressive!

There are some remarkably high-jumping animals in the world

From the kangaroo to the puma, there are so many animals capable of jumping far more efficiently and effectively than we humans can.

While most cats can jump around five times their own height, the average human can only reach a couple feet above the ground – it's actually quite embarrassing!

Cover photo: 123RF/Inus12345

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