Community supports the mob at Reid Park Zoo

TUCSON, Arizona There’s a new mob in town – and they’ve made their home at Reid Park Zoo. The Zoo has a new “mob,” or group, of meerkats on exhibit for the public to enjoy.

The Zoo decided to build the new exhibit for the highly social, small carnivores in response to public request. A visitor survey in 2014 named meerkats as one of the animals guests would most like to see at Tucson’s Zoo.

“The community expressed their interest to add meerkats to our diverse collection of species,” Zoo Administrator Jason Jacobs said. “Our staff and community partners have worked diligently to create a dynamic habitat and for our new meerkats. We look forward to introducing the new meerkats and sharing their story with you.”

Meerkats are a small carnivore related to the mongoose and is native to southern Africa’s Kalahari Desert. Being desert dwellers, meerkats have several adaptations that help them thrive in this climate, including long claws, dark eye patches and an advanced sense of smell.

“Cemrock is excited to help bring the mob to the Zoo so we may continue to connect our community closer to wildlife,” said Krista Luckow, Vice President of Business Development for Cemrock. “Meerkats are energetic desert animals with unique mannerisms that are sure to delight both parents and children alike. We are thrilled to be able to contribute to this project and help bring this mob, or group of meerkats, to Tucson.”

Exhibit design and construction includes a new meerkat habitat with two artificial termite mounds, African décor, a night house, sand and vegetation.

“Reid Park Zoo relies on the generosity of the community to create the best Zoo experience,” Jacobs said. “This exhibit was made possible thanks to in kind contributions from Tuff Shed, Arizona Trucking and Materials, A Thru Z Consulting & Distributing, Inc. and Cemrock. Because of our great community partnerships we now have a mob at the Zoo!”