Animal Encounters

Fun Animal Encounters

From a hairy tarantula to a talking African gray parrot, you never know what you’ll bump into in Ranger Rick's Backyard Safari at the Tennessee Aquarium!

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Animal Keeper

Animal Keeper Updates

Get a peek behind the scenes of the Aquarium’s Husbandry department. Read their weekly animal updates and get an insider’s look at caring for over 10,000 animals and plants.

ANIMAL UPDATES
AMPHIBIANS

Surinam Toad

Pipa pipa

ON EXHIBIT:  Rivers of the World at River Journey

Surinam Toad

FUN FACTS
The Surinam toad is not actually a toad but a rough skinned aquatic frog. This frog relies on camouflage and inactivity to capture prey. A Surinam toad has poor vision and uses small sensory projections on the tips of its feet to feel for prey items. Surinam toads have an interesting breeding behavior. The male and female perform an elaborate courtship dance. Eggs are attached to the female’s back. The skin then swells and fully encases the eggs in small pockets. The eggs develop directly into tiny frogs and hatch out of these pockets.

CONSERVATION
All amphibians are at risk due to factors such as habitat destruction, pollution and diseases such as ranavirus and chytrid fungus.



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About This Animal

SIZE: 8 in (20.3 cm)

RANGE: Northern South America 

HABITAT: Slow-moving waterways with muddy bottoms

DIET: Aquatic insects, crustaceans, worms and fish