Capybara

2015-05-13 Zoo Gladys Mona Bonobos Capabaras 1 584

The capybara lives in a social group of 10 or more led by a dominant male. Males mark their territory by rubbing a scent gland on top of its snout, called the morillo, onto vegetation. With slightly webbed toes, the capybara is an excellent swimmer and often rushes into the water to escape predators.

Meerkat

2015-05-04 Zoo Meerkats Lions Gladys Harambe 3 641

Like other mongooses, meerkats spend the night in a burrow. In the early morning, they stand tall on their hind legs, exposing their bellies to the sun to warm up before the day’s foraging activities can begin. A nearly bald patch of darker skin acts like a solar panel to soak up the sun’s rays.

It’s fascinating to watch the meerkats work together. While the rest of the mob scurries about rustling up grub, they take turns standing tall on…

African Painted Dog

wild-dog

For African painted dogs, also known as wild dogs, cooperation is the name of the game and survival is the aim. Painted dogs live in large, extended families, in which all group members work together for the good of the pack. The leaders of the pack, an alpha male and female, are the only ones that breed. Instead of leaving the pack, their offspring stick around as adults and help raise their younger siblings. Painted dogs give birth to an…

Impala

16174738956_f286cbcdff_b

Slight antelopes known for their graceful running and agile leaping, impalas can leap more than 30 feet across and 10 feet high. Males have long spiral-shaped horns that are used to protect their females and guard their territory. Impalas graze in large herds and bark loudly to alert each other when predators are near.

Lesser Kudu

16711189938_bf211ca8e1_b

A large, striped antelope, the lesser kudu is always on the lookout for predators like lions and painted dogs. Listening with its large ears, the kudu barks and flees with its tail up if it detects danger. Adult males, called bulls, generally live a solitary life, whereas females live in small groups.

Horned Males
Males have incredible spiraled horns. When they fight, they lock horns and have a shoving match.

Warthog

14623299293_a16bf01b51_b

Warthogs are very vocal wild pigs that live in family groups called sounders. They communicate with each other through grunts, squeals, growls and squeaks. Males are easily recognized with two pairs of tusks protruding from their snouts.  These tusks are rarely used, however, as warthogs are not territorial and only fight over females for a very short time during breeding season.

Sugar Glider

Sugar Glider (2) web

Sugar gliders are small possums that can glide more than 100 feet between trees thanks to a thin, furred membrane, known as a patagium, which stretches from the wrist to the ankle on both sides. Hand-like forefeet and hind feet with an opposable toe similar to a human thumb help them grasp branches.

Striped Skunk

Stripped Skunk - 02 web

Striped skunks are easily identified by their coloring pattern of white stripes on black. This pattern serves as a warning to would be predators that they can spray an extremely foul-smelling liquid when threatened. Scent glands at the base of the tail contain about one tablespoon of oily discharge at a time, enough for 5 to 6 sprays.

Chinchilla

Chinchilla - 01 web

Chinchillas are small, soft rodents with bushy tails, large ears and long whiskers. With more hairs per follicle than any other mammal, chinchillas have a super soft coat that keeps them warm in the Andes mountains. Their red blood cells are able to carry more oxygen than other rodents, which is another adaptation to living in high altitudes.