October 4, 2019
By Erica Rymer, Events and Marketing Specialist
It isn’t news that the world is full of wacky and unusual holidays. This year on October 4, people around the world are celebrating both World Smile Day and World Animal Day! World Smile Day encourages individuals to do an act of kindness to make someone else smile, and World Animal Day encourages us to improve the future for animals! We thought we would celebrate both holidays at once by sharing smiling photos of a few of our charismatic Akron Zoo residents. We hope they put a smile on your face too!
Did you know our alpacas use their smiles for more than just posing for the camera? Alpacas are highly social, so they communicate with one another by humming, braying and sometimes even spitting!
Our Himalayan tahrs love their rocky habitat. In their native habitat, it is unlikely you would get to see this smile up close, since tahrs are shy and spend a great deal of time at high elevations.
Tai Lung is our handsome male snow leopard.
Do you know why he can’t hide this huge smile?
Because he’s always spotted!
Our bald eagles all have a very majestic smile! Did you know that bald eagles can only be kept in human care in the U.S. if they can not survive on their own? All of our eagles have been rehabilitated after injuries sustained in their native habitats. They are happy to have a safe home at the Akron Zoo!
Galapagos tortoises are gentle giants, sometimes weighing as much as 600 lbs. However, despite their size they have a friendly temperament since the adults have no natural predators!
Look at that beautiful grin! Did you know that jaguars have a very powerful jaw? Their bite can exert more force than a lion’s!
Our macaws are pretty loud (both in color and volume). Macaws are some of the world’s largest and most colorful parrot species, and in their natural habitat they are very social, living in groups of up to 100! The Akron Zoo’s macaws love to be visited by guests and have been known to squawk at anyone they feel is not paying enough attention to them.
Axolotl were named by the ancient Aztecs. Translated directly, the name means “water dog.” The fringe that frames their faces are actually gills and gives them a unique and distinctive profile. Even losing a limb won’t wreck these guys’ photo readiness - they can regrow a lost limb up to five times, bones and all!
What kind of socks do grizzly bears wear?
None, they have bear feet!
Our grizzly bear, Jackson, can often be seen playing with his feet. It is one of his favorite pastimes, and it seems to put a smile on his face!
Don’t let this beautiful face fool you. Despite their innocent looks, these non-venomous, cave-dwelling snakes are skilled predators who constrict their prey. Their diet consists mostly of bats!
Speaking of bats, meet one of our straw colored fruit bats! Because they eat fruits and flowers, these big guys play an important role in pollination and seed distribution in forests! In their natural habitats, these guys can be found “hanging out” in groups of 100,000 - 1,000,000!
I otter tell you that our North American River Otters are among our most playful and outgoing zoo residents! They are known for their energetic behavior and can often be found playing with other otters, mud sliding, and burrowing and sliding through snow. Plus, who couldn’t love that face?
Our green tree monitors have a unique smile because they can move their upper jaw independently from their skull! This ability helps them to move their prey (mainly insects, birds and small mammals) into a better position for swallowing.
Coyotes are known to be mischievous, though they rarely pose a threat to adult humans. However, be wary in case you ever see a coyote:
Carrying a box marked “ACME”
In possession of a catapult, anvil, boulder or large magnet
Posting signs with slogans such as “Free Bird Seed”
These may be indicators that your coyote is, in fact, a cartoon character.
We hope our animals and jokes made you smile! Help us bring smiles to more faces today by being kind to animals and humans alike. And if you have the chance, help us celebrate World Animal Day by visiting your Akron Zoo. As always, a portion of the proceeds from your visit goes toward improving the future for animals, both in our zoo and around the world through conservation!