Orlando's Gatorland adds kookaburra to its 'kooky' family of animals

click to enlarge Orlando's Gatorland adds kookaburra to its 'kooky' family of animals
Photo courtesy Gatorland
Gatorland welcomed Marshall the laughing kookaburra to its park Wednesday, adding yet another animal to its ever-growing family.

Marshall is 2 years old and comes from a "loving South Florida home," according to Gatorland's press release. According to National Geographic, kookaburras are a symbol of Australia's birdlife, and get their "laughing" descriptor from their "manic laughter-like call."

Kookaburras are the largest members of the Kingfisher family and have beaks that can grow up to four inches long, according to National Geographic. While not considered threatened, kookaburras are native to Australia's eucalyptus forests and "habitat loss is a primary threat to the birds."

Guests can come visit Marshall at his new home at the theme park's Jungle Crocs of the World exhibit, near the Australian Saltwater Crocodiles.

"We are thrilled to give Marshall a new home with us here at Gatorland," said Mark McHugh, president and CEO of Gatorland, in a press statement. "He is so much fun, and his loud, 'laughing' vocalizations will not only entertain the guests but provide additional auditory enrichment for the saltwater crocodiles."

Although Gatorland is known as the "Alligator Capital of the World," the park features a bevy of other animals as well — a wide variety of snakes, tortoises, birds and wild cats. The park even added two baby capybaras — Ben and Jerry — last October.

"We love adding new animals to our park to entertain and educate our guests," McHugh said. "Just a few months ago, we brought Ben and Jerry the Capybaras to Gatorland, and now Marshall. We know our visitors will love them as much as we do."

For the month of January, Gatorland is offering a special ticket price of $9.99 to Florida residents with a valid ID.

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