Hwange National Park is a famous reserve located in western Zimbabwe.
Lion Country Safari is proud to be a part of the SSP (Species Survival Plan) of this endangered species, and many white rhinos have been born on our preserve since 1977. In the wild, rhinos have been hunted for their horns. Instead of being composed of bony material, rhino “horns” are made of fibers of keratin, a protein also found in our human hair and fingernails. White rhinos get their name from the Afrikaans word “wyde,” meaning wide, or square-lipped. Their color is actually stone-gray, not white as their name suggests.
A member of the horse family, all are marked with patterns of stripes. Each individual has unique markings and like human fingerprints, no two are alike. Zebras are social animals that form close knit groups composed of an adult stallion, several mares and their foals. These family groups join together to form a herd. (Zebra foals are born throughout the year at Lion Country Safari.)
The hartebeest maybe somewhat odd in appearance, but are remarkably one of the fastest and enduring runners among antelopes. This grassland antelope is mostly found in west, east and southern regions of Africa. Hartebeests are large animals with a fawn-colored coat. There are several sub species of this animal.
Lion Country Safari is home to one of the largest displays of wild chimpanzees in North America. Our five island habitats are home to several generations of chimpanzees, which trace their roots back to east Africa. Though some of our chimpanzees are former house pets and actors, many have been born here and they are now all fully integrated into the complex social structure of each island troop and may be considered wild. Learn about the chimpanzees at our facility.
Native to Southeast Asia, gibbons live in small family groups in dense forest habitat and travel through their environment in a hand-over-hand method of locomotion known as brachiation. Their coat color ranges from cream to black and does not indicate the age or the gender of the animal.
The tallest of all animals, giraffes can reach heights of 18 feet. With keen senses of smell, sight, and hearing, giraffes are well equipped to sense danger approaching. Its long legs, neck, and 18-inch tongue allow the giraffe to reach the tender leaves of the tallest acacia trees. Despite the length of its neck, a giraffe still only has seven vertebrae in its neck — the same number as most other mammals. Giraffe horns (ossicones) are covered with fur; only giraffe and their closest living relatives (okapi) have these kinds of horns.
An unusual member of the antelope family is the wildebeest, also known as the gnu. Due to their muscular shoulders and thin legs, they have a top-heavy appearance. There is a fringe of hair on their chests, and their faces are strongly whiskered. Their horns curve out over their ears and turn sharply upward at the ends. Wildebeest dominate the plains and acacia savannas of southeastern Africa, where they feed on short grasses.
The greater kudu is one of the most beautiful species of antelope in the world. Native to the bushlands and woodlands of central and southern Africa, kudus are browsers that eat the leaves and shoots from a variety of plants. Males are known for their spectacular, curved horns which can grow as long as 6 feet. These horns do not prevent kudus from getting around in their densely wooded habitat; they simply tilt their chins up, laying their horns flat against their backs, and can then move easily through the dense vegetation.
Range: native to southern Africa.
Fast Facts: Weighs up to 309 lbs (140kg). Only males have horns. The nyala does not show signs of territoriality. They are very cautious creatures.