Lizards and Turtles and Snakes, Oh My!

The Learning Zoo is home to many species of reptiles, invertebrates, birds, and mammals from all over the world.  Some of our animals are available to come out to parties and you'll see those marked with a  

Others remain at the zoo looking forward to seeing you there. 

Each has a personal story, as well as unique adaptations that help them survive in the wild.

Turtles & Tortoises
 Red-Foot Tortoises

Our red-foot tortoises hail from South America! Mango, Plum, Ruby, and Citrine love naps, sunshine, and strawberries! 

Did you know? Tortoises are found on every continent except Australia and Antarctica.

 Box Turtles

Lane, Delores, and Penelope are locals, rescued from traffic in the Houston Area. Hope and Squirtle, our baby box turtles, were born at The Learning Zoo.

Box turtles are omnivores, meaning they eat both plants and animals.

◄ Sugar Gliders

Sugar Gliders Ray and Evangeline are little balls of energy! In the wild they eat fruit, nectar, and insects, and glide from tree to tree with flaps of skin between their front and back legs. 

Even though they look like flying squirrels, these little cuties are actually marsupials from Australia!

Kune Kune Pig

Pua is a very special piggy! She belongs to a rare Polynesian breed called Kune Kune, originally kept by the Maori people of New Zealand. 

"Kune Kune" means "round and tubby" in the Maori language, and Pua is a big fan of snacks. She also enjoys going on walks in her specially-made harness, and meeting new people for ear scratches and belly rubs!

Did you know? In Disney's Moana, Pua the pig was based on real-life Kune Kune! The name Pua means "flower". 

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◄ Domestic Rats

Learn about rodents with the real-life stars of Ratatouille! 

Fawn and Silvermist are a pair of domestic rats, and are extremely friendly, curious, and gentle. 

Did you know that rats are extremely social and intelligent, and have fantastic memories! They have been taught to solve puzzles, navigate mazes, and remember shapes and colors. 

◄ Blue Tongue Skink

Luna, our Blue Tongued Skink, is a friendly and inquisitive lizard from Australia and New Guinea. These chunky-bodied lizards are always up for an adventure, and she uses her bright blue tongue to investigate new objects and people.

Did you know? Blue tounged skinks are one of the few lizards that give birth to live young!

◄ Bearded Dragon

Valentina is a young Inland Bearded Dragon. These spiny lizards are found in Central Australia, and are common pets in the United States. There is nothing common about Valentina's looks and attitude though! 

Valentina's favorite foods are basil and bugs! You'll love watching her snack on both!

◄ Green Iguana

Darwin is a male green iguana, and he rules the roost in the enclosure he shares with our red-foot tortoises.

Iguanas are excellent swimmers, but spend most of their time in the trees, eating leaves and flowers.

◄ $$ Due to Darwin's large size, he requires special transport and booking him for a show carries an additional $10 charge*

◄ Leopard Gecko

Zack is a 7 year-old leopard gecko, and has grown up in the world of education! 

He spends his summers as a classroom animal for WOW! Science camp, and lives at The Learning Zoo in the off-season. 

While leopard geckoes are known for their black spots, Zack is an albino, meaning he has no melanin, and his spots are brown instead of black. 

◄ Gargoyle Gecko

Morticia is a Gargoyle Gecko and is a master of disguise!  She can transform her coloration to match almost anything.

Gargoyle Geckos come from New Caledonia (an island near Australia).  They love to climb in trees and their big eyes help them see in the dim light of a forest. They prefer to be alone, so although you see what looks like two geckos in the picture here, they are both Morticia--just with a change of color!

◄ Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches

Our Hissing Cockroaches may seem icky at first glance, but they're actually gentle vegetarians with a very important job! By eating decomposing fruit and leaves, these invertebrate recycling machines contribute to the circle of life. 

Did you know? Male hissing cockroaches have "horns" that they use to fight each other, just like mountain goats!

◄ Arizona Blonde Tarantula

Charlotte is a fuzzy friend from the American Southwest! 

Her hobbies include staying at home in her burrow, eating insects, and helping dispel myths and misconceptions about spiders.

Even though tarantulas produce silk like other spiders, they do not build elaborate webs to catch food. Instead, they actively seek out and ambush prey, like a tiger!

◄ Tiger Salamander

Alexander the Tiger Salamander is a truly awesome amphibian! Although he normally lives underground, he never minds coming out to meet new people!

Tiger salamanders start their lives in the water, breathing with gills. They lose their gills and paddle-shaped tails as they mature, and spend their adult lives living in burrows underground. 

◄ Dumpy Treefrog

Sammy Croaker is our resident treefrog, and he doesn't mind being called "dumpy." These frogs are from Australia, and have ferocious appetites for insects!

Frogs are known as "environmental indicators" due to their sensitivity to pollution. Healthy frogs are a sign of healthy waterways!

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◄ Carpet Python

Chester is a brilliantly colored snake from Australia. These constrictors are excellent climbers and very curious. Chester loves to climb on people, and will sometimes even go to sleep on your shoulders!

In the wild, carpet pythons eat rodents, birds, and even large bats!

◄ Reticulated Python

At over 8 feet, Apollo the reticulated python is a gentle giant. His size, color, and engaging personality will wow any animal lover, and make converts out of the most nervous admirers. 

Reticulated pythons are one of the largest snakes in the world, and the largest female ever measured was over 25 feet! In the wilds of Southeast Asia they eat birds, reptiles, and mammals as large as wild pigs!

◄ $$ Due to Apollo's large size, he requires special transport and booking him for a show carries an additional $15 charge*

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◄ California Kingsnake

Kingsnakes like Dot are skilled hunters, roaming the deserts of California and Arizona for lizards, birds, rodents, and other snakes. Although Dot is still very small, she is growing into a beautiful snake, and would love to meet new people.

Kingsnakes have a natural resistance to rattlesnake venom!

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◄ Corn Snake

Corn snakes get their name from being found in cornfields, but it's not the corn that attracts them, instead its the mice that come looking for the corn!  Their bellies also resemble maize, an ancient varity of corn.

Cornflake is a prime example of a mature corn snake that has served as an ambassador animal at schools and children's camps for many years.  We are honored to have him join us at The Learning Zoo!