Happy Early Christmas to Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium! In the first week of December, they were gifted with the hatching of Zoo’s first Mexican giant horned lizard offspring. They’re the second institution accredited by The Association of Zoos and Aquariums, behind the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, to breed this species.
They’re currently raising six of these little giants!
The Mexican giant horned lizard is endemic to the Pacific Coast of southern Mexico. It is the largest species of horned lizard, reaching up to eight inches from snout to tail. Most other horned lizards (sometimes referred to as “horny toads”) in the genus Phrynosoma are ant specialists, requiring them as a large part of their diet. These giants have adapted to eating many other types of insects, and don’t rely on them like their cousins.
The adults can be seen in the Desert Dome’s Rattlesnake Canyon. Their babies are being raised behind the scenes for now, while keepers closely monitor their feeding and growth.
Photos: Matt T., lead reptile keeper – Desert Dome/Mahoney Kingdoms of the Night