If you’re reading this, chances are you’ve been a Disney World guest (or at least wished or are planning to be one!).
But we think we might have figured out who the most UNLOVED guests in all of Disney World are! The CRITTERS! Disney World might seem like a magical far-away land, but it’s still just central Florida. So, we’ve seen our fair share of bugs, snakes, birds, and more that maaaaybe aren’t the most-loved guests in all of Disney World… .
Let’s start with a VERY controversial critter — the SNAKE. Some people love ’em, some people hate ’em, but we can all agree they’re not always the most welcome visitors in the world (or Disney World for that matter). Let’s take a look at some of the times snakes have gotten a littttle too friendly in the parks!
Back in 2019, we spotted a slithery friend making his way through Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and you can bet he was NOT in an exhibit. We’re pretty sure he was a black racer snake (common and harmless!) and he’s a good reminder that central Florida can be a bit of a haven for reptiles — Disney World included.
And we’re not the only ones who’ve spotted these slithery guests in the park. Earlier this summer, a TikTok went viral when the gorillas on Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail discovered a snake in their habitat and dealt with it about as well as we would. That is to say…not that well.
And, as you probably know, snakes aren’t the only reptile known to inhabit central Florida. There are alligators here too and unfortunately, they can’t always stay away from Disney World. The state is basically a giant swampy wetland area, so Disney is technically invading THEIR homes, not the other way around!
That’s why you might spot gator signs near the edge of waters warning against swimming. Disney World does everything they can to monitor and remove gators as much as possible but, again, it’s a swamp. Alligators go with Florida swampland like Mickey goes with Magic Kingdom! Monitor any posted signs around property warning you to be careful and watch for snakes, gators, and more — they’re there to help keep you safe.
Another unwelcome guest in Disney World (perhaps the most unwelcome guest) is a bug. Disney World does seem to be mysteriously devoid of the clouds of bugs that plague Orlando (at least mostly), but sometimes the creepy crawlies do creep in.
Of course, we gotta talk about love bugs. Love bugs are a Florida (and much of the South) bug that shows up for about two weeks in May and again in September. If you’re in Disney World during this time, you know how much a nuisance these little guys can be. These little black bugs (often seen stuck together in pairs!) can’t hurt you (they’re completely harmless and actually many kids enjoy catching them like they might fireflies), but they might get in your stuff, on your car, and everywhere else. We could do without these guests!
We’ve also, unfortunately, had some run-ins with cockroaches. Typically, when you see a roach in Florida, it might not surprise you but they seem EXTRA scary in Disney World. A few members of our team have even had stand-offs in their hotel rooms! We’re not saying you need to pack the Raid, but don’t be surprised if you have a run-in with a cockroach. Where else might you spot cockroaches? Again, it’s the south. They’re ALL over outside. Just stand still at night and check out some of the gardens near you. You might be surprised to see them MOVE.
AND Disney is not necessarily free from bed bugs. Unfortunately, these nuisances love to flock to hotels and there are a LOT of hotels in Disney World. According to the Orlando Sentinel, a family has even sued over a bad case of bed bugs. Yikes. We’ve never had a run-in with bed bugs in Disney World, but it’s still worth noting — always check your hotel beds!
Whew, we have the heebie-jeebies just thinking about them. But as we learned from Flik, Hopper, and Heimlich, it’s a bug’s world, and we’re just livin’ in it — even at Disney!
Okay, okay, yes. Bees are technically bugs. But they have caused so many Disney World problems we had to give them their own section! Bee stings are something to be prepared for, but they can also cause a lot more mischief… .
Already this year bees have been a nuisance at two spots in Disney World. In February, the Rooftop Bar at the Coca-Cola Store in Disney World had to close for almost the whole day due to bees. Who knew the honey makers were also makin’ so much trouble?
THEN, in April, a GIANT beehive took up residence by the pool at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. We love our pollinators, but maybe not when they’re swarming through our pool day.
And this year wasn’t even the first we dealt with bees! Back in 2019, during the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays, bees invaded one of the Joffrey’s Coffee booths and it couldn’t open that day because of it.
Hey, maybe they just love Disney food as much as we do.
And our final category of unloved guests is birds! Sure, you love the Disney ducks (we do too — they’re ADORABLE), but feathered friends can cause their fair share of problems too.
We actually HAVE seen ducks cause a problem before. A family of Magic Kingdom ducks actually took up residence in Splash Mountain back in 2019. Of course, this caused a potentially dangerous situation for them and the ride had to be shut down. Ducks might be cute, but are they cute enough to forgive when they’re the reason you don’t get to ride a must-do?
And ducks aren’t the only birds who are ruffling feathers in the parks. Earlier this year, we spotted some birds building a nest in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge! While this was more cute than a nuisance to us, Disney probably didn’t consider these little guys as good for the immersion.
Are these birds native to Batuu?! Birds nest spotted in Black Spire Outpost! 📸: jess_isbaking on Instagram pic.twitter.com/JbWbQkevuM
— Disney Food Blog (@DisneyFoodBlog) April 8, 2021
And then there are the ever BOLD birds that will try to steal your food right out of your hands. These white-feathered pals are especially pervasive near Casey’s Corner in Magic Kingdom and the American Adventure in EPCOT, but you never know when your fries might be in danger of getting snatched up.
We’re sure your very nice, Mr. Bird, but we wouldn’t eat your bugs. So please don’t eat our lunch.
See? There are certainly some unlovable guests in Disney World. YES, it’s Disney and YES, we want to think it’s PERFECT and immune to the issues of the real world. But…it’s not. Remember that even the Most Magical Place on Earth has critters and don’t be too surprised if you cross paths with some! As always, keep an eye on DFB for the latest Disney updates!
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What critter run-ins have you had in Disney World? Tell us in the comments!