Olympics 2016: Exotic Animals Take Over Rio Golf Course

August 5, 2016

Monkeys and rodents and birds, oh my! Golfers won’t be the only guests at Rio de Janeiro’s Olympic course for the 2016 Summer Games.

The Gil Hanse-designed track has provided extra green space for a variety of native Brazilian furry friends, including owls, monkeys, sloths, crocodiles and more.

Oh, and capybaras. According to The National Post, you can expect to see a lot of them over the course of the Olympics, as golf course grass is a favorite midnight snack of the oversized rodent.

“There are also three-toed sloths, monkeys, boa constrictors and caimans, a small crocodile that doesn’t usually grow beyond five feet in length,” The Post says. “They frequent holes 2, 3, 5 and 9.”

But some of the animals might actually become part of how the golf course plays next week: Mark Johnson, director of international agronomy for the PGA Tour, told the Post that corujas, a ground-nesting owl, like to burrow holes about 8 inches in diameter.

“The players won’t be too upset, they’ll just get a free drop,” said Johnson. Take that, lift, clean and place!

The Opening Ceremonies are live from Maracana Stadium Friday, August 5 at 7 p.m. ET. The men kick off competition Thursday, August 11, with the women following the next week, Thursday, August 17. (Exotic!) Animals on the golf course: just one more reason to tune in to Olympic golf.