Moody Gardens is home to over 5,500 animals representing 650 different species from around the world. Moody Gardens is a member of the American Zoo and Aquarium Association and is dedicated to the survival of selected wildlife species. We’ve put together a few fun facts about some of the awesome animals living at Moody Gardens.
Blue Duiker: The blue duiker is a small antelope with slate-colored fur and a slight bluish tint. The average lifespan of this nocturnal animal is about ten to twelve years. Blue duikers come from forested and shrub habitats, including rainforests throughout central and southern Africa. They are omnivorous, feeding on seeds, mosses, leaves, fruit, and the occasional small animal. The word “duiker” is Afrikaans for “diver,” and the animal was given this name because the antelope dives into undergrowth when startled. The animal is becoming less common in the wild because of hunting. It is not necessarily threatened with extinction but still needs extra care to ensure its survival.
African Speckled Pigeon: This African bird is brown to bluish-gray with a gray head and underside. Its name stems from the white speckles on its wings. These birds also have red skin visible around each eye. They can grow to be about thirteen inches in length from head to tail. African Speckled Pigeons can be found in grasslands, urban areas, forests, and cliff ledges south of the African Sahara. They eat seeds, grains, and fruits and are a very urban species in Africa. They are a non-threatened species.
Panamanian Golden Frog: This brightly colored frog is yellow-orange with black splotches. Its skin secretions are toxic and used as a defense mechanism against predators. The Panamanian Golden Frog can be found in moist, humid, forested areas in Panama (hence the name). This golden frog is an insectivore, surviving off a variety of insects. It is a cultural symbol of the Republic of Panama and is a threatened species, meaning it needs extra precautions taken to ensure its survival.
Learn more about the animals of Moody Gardens by visiting the Aquarium Pyramid and Rainforest Pyramid. Be sure to check out the Moody Gardens Hotel for family-friendly accommodations on your next trip.