You could hop on a plane and travel 8,000 miles to Africa to see some amazing animals, but it sure would be easier to get in your car and visit Wild Florida.
Interested in seeing animals from Africa? We’ve got nine! (That is, if we include our zebra hybrids, the zdonk and zorse. We don't want to hurt their feelings!)
Some of them are in our African Plains exhibit, but others are scattered throughout our Wildlife Park.
- Zebra – It’s one of the most recognized animals in the world because of its stripes. Experts believe the pattern unique to each animal acts as a camouflage to protect the animal from predators and insects.
- Serval – Servals are sometimes mistaken for small leopards or cheetahs. In proportion to the rest of their body, they are considered to have to have the longest legs of any cat.
- African porcupine – The largest porcupine in the world can sound like a snake when it’s rattled. When the animal shakes its quills, it makes a rattle-like sound.
- Turaco – If green is your color, this is your bird. Unlike other birds whose green color is formed from a mix of blue and yellow, the color in the feathers of this bird is a true green. They are from the Musophagidae bird family, which literally means banana eaters, so you can guess what their favorite snack is.
- African pied hornbills – You can pick these birds out far away because of their long, curved bill. Their bills are great for fighting, building a nest, or catching prey, but can make mealtime a real drag. The bird’s tongue is not long enough to reach food at the far end of its bill, so it often has to jerk its head back and forth just to eat.
- Watusi – These cattle may look like they come from Texas because of their long horns, but they’ve been seen in pictographs in Egyptian pyramids. It is because of that association that they are often referred to as the cattle of kings.
- Lemurs – These guys were cool even before the series of Madagascar films came out. We have two new twin lemurs that were part of our cuteness overload of baby animals a couple of months ago. We don’t think they dance, but who knows what happens at night when everyone leaves the park.
- Zdonk and Zorse – These two animals are part zebra and part donkey or horse. They are sometimes referred to as zebroids. So why do people breed a zebra with either a horse or donkey? The zdonk or zorse are not as susceptible to some diseases horses and donkeys get because they have immunities from the zebra.