NORFOLK--The Virginia Zoo announced a new exhibit Friday. Visitors to the zoo's exhibit building can now see a tamandua habitat.
Tamanduas are a species of anteater from South America, where they inhabit both forests and savanna.
Adult Tamanduas range from 28 to 62 inches long, including a 15 to 26-inch tail. They weigh from 3 to 19 pounds.
At the base of their tails is a gland similar to a skunk's, that releases a very unpleasant odor used to deter predators.
Tamanduas are very solitary animals. They feed on ants, termites and bees. They have long claws that they use to break into insect nests or for self-defense.
The animal is mainly nocturnal and spends much of its time foraging in trees. Tamanduas nest in hollow tree trunks or in the abandoned burrows of other animals.
Natives of the Amazon sometimes use tamanduas to rid their homes of ants and termites.
The zoo has two tamanduas: a male named Felipito and a female named Grace.