Genus Sphenodon

Fascinating Facts


Tuataras find burrows created by other animals, and will often share them. They eat insects, lizards, birds, and eggs. Young tuataras will hunt during the day to avoid being eaten by adults, who hunt at night.

Status in the Wild

Cook Straight Tuatara  Least Concern, IUCN 1996

Brothers Island Tuatara  Vulnerable, IUCN 1994


Once throughout mainland New Zealand, they are now only found on 32 offshore islands.

Location in the Zoo

Reptiles and Birds Zone of the Sculpture Learning Plaza

Animals & Exhibits