Zoo

The Zoo at Chehaw is home to 238 specimens representing over 125 different species. Enjoy natural, outdoor exhibits including Cheetahs, Black Rhinoceros’, Meerkats, Black Bears, Alligators, and many more, while you stroll through our scenic boardwalks and cypress swamp. Participate in animal feedings and keeper talks every weekend. Chehaw’s African Veldt Ride is free with admission, and will take you through our largest exhibit where seven different species roam in natural herds. The Zoo at Chehaw is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). To be accredited, zoos must undergo a thorough investigation to ensure that they have met, and will to continue to meet, ever-rising standards. These standards encompass animal care, veterinary programs, conservation, education, and safety. AZA requires zoos and aquariums to successfully complete this rigorous accreditation process every five years.

Glaucomys volans

The southern flying squirrel can be found in the eastern part of the United States and found as far west as the Great Plains. They can also be found as north as Quebec, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick, and as south as Honduras. Southern flying squirrels prefer temperate to sub-temperate deciduous and mixed forests that consist of beech-maple, oak-hickory, and poplar trees. They prefer to nest in tree cavities but when none are available they will nest in old bird and squirrel nest, nest boxes and woodpecker wholes. Their shelters are commonly found about 100 meters from a body of water.

Southern flying squirrels can reach a maximum of 12 in in length and weigh about 90 grams. A large aspect of these squirrels is the loose fold of haired skin. This is called the patagium or the gliding membrane, which has black hair around the edges. This membrane extends from the front wrists to the rear ankles. When all four libs are extended, the patagium allows the squirrel to glide.

Southern flying squirrels are omnivores. That being said their feeding habits make them the most carnivorous of the squirrel family. Their diet consists of insects, nuts, bird eggs, berries, carrion, and seeds. They have been known to also eat nestlings, blossoms, buds, fungi, lichen, and bark. Southern flying squirrels are strictly nocturnal. This helps them to avoid predators like owls, hawks, snakes, bobcats, raccoons, weasels, and domestic cats.