Super Animals, Super Heroes

The ever popular, world-renowned Comic-Con International is in town, drawing an eclectic collection of comics, costumes, storytellers, movie stars, super heroes, alter egos, and droves of people who admire them. If, by some twist of fate, you don’t have a coveted badge to attend the extravaganza, there’s still a dazzling array of creatures with their own gravity-defying, often heroic, ninja-like moves to discover and celebrate over at the San Diego Zoo and Safari Park.

Making the world a better place by leaps and bounds, two Amur leopard cubs can be “spotted” at the San Diego Zoo wrestling, running, and taking the world by storm.


She not may be protecting Atlantis, but swimming gracefully upside-down underwater without getting water up your nose is pretty close to a super power for this young hippo.


Leapin’ lizards! This red-headed rock agama (also aptly called the rainbow agama) of sub-Saharan Africa, seems to walk on air with colorful, carefree flair.


Phone home! The nocturnal aye-aye of Madagascar is reminiscent of a sweet, extraterrestrial character that a boy named Elliott met up with in the 1980s mega movie hit E.T.


This agile young bonobo reminds me of James Bond doing a tight rope walk to escape the bad guys. In this case, however, it is just to collect some delicious goodies.


Winged water-walking superheroes come in all shapes and colors—even pink! This flamboyant flamingo is sticking her neck out for marine life.


As the top predator on Madagascar, the feisty fossa must demonstrate some serious moves to bring down a lemur meal.


The ring-tailed lemur has to be on its toes—and on the look out for any hungry fossa lurking in the treetops. Its long, striped tail makes precarious balancing acts a breeze.


Suspended midair, the Hamadryas baboon shows its brawny athletic side, while barely getting a hair out of place. Spreading calm and fairness across monkey society takes great courage and strength.


Boing! When bouncing six feet straight up in the air and running 35 miles per hour are part your skill set, gray kangaroos got it goin’ on for conquering evil and bringing a pouch of peace to the world (and the Safari Park).

Of course, there are many more animal heroes in the Nature Universe. Nominate your favorite creature and share its superpower in the comment section!

Karyl Carmignani is a staff writer for San Diego Zoo Global. Read her previous article, And Then There Were Two.