Check out what’s happening at Caldwell Zoo!
Here you’ll find both recent news and information on upcoming events at the Zoo.
THE SERVALS HAVE A NEW ADDRESS
The servals have moved! You will now find them in the enclosure near the bongos, duikers and colobus monkeys. And, now living where the servals were (by bobcats) you will find our newest member of the cat family--Maya the ocelot. Maya is still adjusting to her new home and sometimes doesn't venture far from the door to her indoor quarters.
SOX THE FOX MAKES HIS DEBUT AT THE ZOO
Sox the Fox has found his home at the Caldwell Zoo. Sox's mother was killed by a car. At that time, Sox was too young to be able to take care of himself, so he needed a safe home where he could grow up. Good news!! Sox's two sisters--Pixie and Trixie--have cleared quarantine and have joined their brother on exhibit.
CHILEAN FLAMINGOS ARE AT IT AGAIN!
Our Chilean flamingos have been busy building mud nests and laying eggs. So far we have about 30 eggs (probably not all of those will be fertile) and the flamingos are still busy. So, when you come to the zoo, be sure you check out the flamingos--look for their chimney-shaped mud nests and if the adult stands up you might even get a peek at an egg and hopefully will be be able to see flamingo chicks on the island.
GOLDEN LION TAMARINS COME TO CALDWELL ZOO
Check out this beautiful little primate! Tamarins are the smallest of the New World monkeys. Golden lion tamarins are native to southeastern Brazil and are one of the world's most critically endangered animals. These little guys prefer to spend most of their time in the upper canopies of the rainforest.. In the wild, their diet generally consists of fruits and insects. Keep your fingers crossed, we would like to have some babies in the future!
A BANNER YEAR FOR OUR ATTWATER'S PRAIRIE CHICKENS
Caldwell Zoo has 17 young Attwater's prairie chicks--our biggest year ever! These extremely endangered native Texas birds used to number in the millions, but today there are only about 100 left in the wild. Your zoo cooperates with other Texas zoos and state agencies to make sure that there will always be Attwater's prairie chickens here in Texas. Some of the chicks raised right here in Tyler, Texas, will be released to special preserves in southern Texas. What a great conservation story!
There are some new gazelles enjoying our African overlook. Three male Soemmerring's gazelles have arrived from the St. Louis Zoo. These beautiful gazelles are quite easily spotted with their bright white rump patches. Hatari, Pockets and Rusty are rather tall gazelles with short lyre-shaped horns. Soemmerring's gazelles are classified as vulnerable by the ICUN (international Union for the Conservation of Nature) and are actually thought to be extinct in some parts of their African range. In fact, this subspecies has been understudied due to its small population. In North American AZA-accredited zoos, there are only 12.15 (12 males.15 females) Soemmerring's gazelles in four institutions.
EIGHT-LEGGED BEAUTIES AT CALDWELL ZOO
Caldwell Zoo has been invaded by some eight-legged wonders--tarantulas! These creatures come from four continents--Asia, Africa, North and South America. These unique beauties, like the ghost ornamental tarantula (pictured above) from Asia also include the Brazilian white knee that can grow to over eight inches to the incredible Goliath bird-eater which really can eat small birds to the horned baboon tarantula which does have a horn-like protrusion in the middle of its cephalothorax.
Tarantulas are arachnids along with other spiders, but more specifically they belong to the family Theraphosidae. There are about 900 species of tarantulas inhabiting six continents (not the polar regions). These animals can be arboreal (living in trees), terrestrial (ground dwelling) or burrowing. Tarantulas can be as small as a fingernail or as large as a dinner plate. Generally tarantulas eat insects, but the biggest are able to eat small birds, mice and lizards. All spiders have venom--an aid in capturing prey--but tarantulas are not able to kill humans unless the person has an allergy to spider venom or is health-compromised. Every spider has eight legs and two body parts--a cephalothorax (head/thorax) and abdomen. Often a tarantula has a hairy body, but other types of spiders may have some body hairs. As with other spiders, tarantulas produce silk for webs of all sorts. Some make webs that look like tubes while other might use their silk to strengthen the walls of underground burrows. Although they do produce webs, tarantulas do not use their webs to capture lunch, but will ambush and tackle their prey.
So, be sure to check out our tarantula exhibit. You'll find these eight-legged beauties in the North American Reptile House.