Translate Our Site

ABQ BioPark Zoo's Fastest Animals

These animals can easily outrun even the fastest Run for the Zoo competitors.

Run for the Zoo is just around the corner. You don't see many animals running 5Ks, but when it comes to short sprints, many of our zoo residents have us beat by a long shot. While one of the world's fastest humans, Usain Bolt, has been clocked sprinting at almost 28 miles per hour, many of our friends in the animal kingdom can handily beat us to the finish line.

Here is a list of the Zoo’s top sprinters. 

Gold medal: Cheetah

60 miles per hour

Cheetah with a gold meda

The cheetah is the fastest land animal and can reach speeds of 60 miles per hour in less than three seconds. Come visit the athletic Annabelle in the ABQ BioPark Zoo’s Africa section.

Silver medal: Lion

50 miles per hour

It may appear that they’re just “lion” around all day, but lions can reach speeds of 50 miles per hour to hunt prey. Come say hi to the ABQ BioPark’s newest lions, siblings Dixie and Ken, on the Catwalk.

Bronze medal (tie): African painted dog and kangaroo

35-40 miles per hour

Both the African painted dog and kangaroo have been clocked in at 35-40 miles per hour. Come visit the BioPark’s African painted dogs Digger, Moose and Growly in the Africa section. And don’t forget to visit the Zoo’s kangaroos on the Catwalk.

In-flight winner: Golden eagle

150-200 miles per hour

This raptor is second only to the peregrine falcon in flight speed. You can visit the Zoo’s golden eagle at the Raptor Roost exhibit.

Leg-less winner: Black mamba

14 miles per hour

Black mambas may not have any legs, but they can still move pretty swiftly (14 miles per hour might not seem very fast compared to the black mamba's competitors, but consider that the average human jogs at a pace somewhere between 4-6 miles per hour)! Come check out our black mamba in the ABQ BioPark's Reptile House.