Pool in the caves of the Omaha Henry Doorly Zoo's Kingdoms of the Night.

Kingdoms of the Night

Darkness. Pitch black at every turn. No difference between eyes open and eyes shut. Fear naturally sets in as the sun sets.

But what truly scares us about the dark is what might be lurking right in front of us, waiting to strike. Animals that thrive in darkness are often thought of as monsters, like vampires and werewolves; however, what scares us, also intrigues us.

We are drawn into the mystery of the dark, anxious to uncover its secrets. The Eugene T. Mahoney Kingdoms of the Night® at the Omaha Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium offers one of the best opportunities.

According to the Omaha Zoo website, as of March 2020, the Mahoney Kingdoms of the Night is the largest nocturnal exhibit in the world and contains the world’s largest indoor swamp.

From springhaas (an unbelievably cute creature that looks kind of like a baby kangaroo) and bats to crocodiles and toads, explore the world that comes to life after you go to sleep. Around the world, savannas, caves, and swamps stretch our imaginations as to what can be called home.

By the end of your adventure, you will have seen pools that seem to go on forever, know the difference between an alligator and a crocodile, and even have seen an alligator without pigment.

With the lights dimmed, all your other senses become heightened…you notice the smell of the caves and Eucalyptus trees…hear the sound of the waterfall and hiss of the alligators more clearly…feel the moisture and temperature shift from the savanna to the swamp.

Few children have missed the opportunity to hear their voices echo off the walls of the massive bat cavern. It also happens to be the perfect place to channel your inner Batman as you look up toward the few beams of light shining through top of the Desert Dome’s famous mountain.

So whether you are trying to get a feel for what spelunking might be like, finally settling the alligator vs. crocodile debate, or channeling your inner Dark Knight, you will find what you are looking for and so much more in the Kingdoms of the Night. You might even come out with an unexpected appreciation for the creatures of the night. The only way to know for sure is to see for yourself!

Plan your visit to the Kingdoms of the Night, located in the basement of the Desert Dome and the Lied Jungle at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium today!

Learn more about Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium today!

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