Madagascar Giant Jumping Rats

Meet the newest members of our Rainforest Pyramid: Madagascar Giant Jumping Rats

Photo courtesy of Philadelphia Zoo

These guys are the largest endemic rodents in Madagascar. They find food by foraging the forest floor for fallen fruits. These nocturnal animals live in dry and deciduous coastal forests. Jumping rats often communicate in trills and barks, and are extremely active and curious creatures.  Despite the name, they don’t really jump unless they’re startled or frightened. Both of our new additions are male.

Moody Gardens is fortunate enough to provide a home for the Jumping Rats, as we are only one of six North American zoos and aquariums to have these species. These endangered species are threatened by habitat loss and hunted by feral cats and dogs.

With these newest family members, we are now a part of the large European Endangered Species Program (EEP), equivalent to the North American’s AZA Species Survival Plan.

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