Meet the new animals at the Mill Mountain Zoo

New arrivals include a pot-bellied pig and a flock of wood ducks

The Mill Mountain Zoo is adding to their animal collection. New arrivals at the Zoo include a pot-bellied pig named “Ody”.

ROANOKE, Va. – The Mill Mountain Zoo is adding to its animal collection.

New arrivals at the zoo include a pot-bellied pig named “Ody.” His real name is Odysseus because of his epic journey to the zoo. He continues the ancient Greek naming trend for Mill Mountain Zoo. Their other pig, who shares an exhibit with Ody, is named Homer.

Ody was found in Roanoke City and has become a staff favorite. He is smart and adapting well to his new home.

“He is very high energy. He is very curious. He is very sweet. He likes people. So, when someone comes over to speak to him, he wags his tail with enthusiasm and comes over to visit,” said Jessie Coffman, the communications director for the zoo.

In addition to Ody, 14 wood ducks have found a new home at the Mill Mountain Zoo as well. They were brought in by the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources.

The population of wood ducks is in serious decline due to hunting and loss of nesting sites in the early 1900s. Through intervention and preservation, the ducks show the importance of species conservation because their numbers have rebounded.

Wildlife preservation and educational efforts are a major goal of the Zoo. These efforts will continue thanks to a generous donation from a Roanoke Valley philanthropist. Heywood Fralin has established an endowment fund that will help offset operational costs. The community leader hopes to preserve the future of the non-profit, where families can learn how human interference threatens vulnerable animals in the region.

About the Author:

Brittany Wier joined the 10 News team as the morning reporter in August 2021.