New Dogs in Town.
New this year, families will be nose-to-nose with two new residents of the Zoo, critically endangered African painted dogs. The pair is made up of a male named Hatari, and a female named Layla. The duo is the “Alpha pair,” meaning they will lead the ZooTampa pack.
Hatari takes the role of alpha male. The animal care team describe him as smart, observant and always eager to see them! Layla takes the role of the alpha female, but has a playful side! She can be seen splashing in the water with Hatari on hot days and can be heard making their signature high-pitched vocalizations when excited.
A unique quality of these dogs is displayed primarily in their hunting capabilities. On occasion, the Zoo will host carcass feeds to display this unique hunting behavior. Hunting cooperatively, African painted dogs hunt in packs of 6 to 20 animals.