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Woodland Park Zoo wolf, Shila, gets pacemaker in groundbreaking and life-saving surgery

Posted by Farrah Paul, Communications Photos by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo 14-year-old Shila was diagnosed with a  life-threatening cardiac arrhythmia. Woodland Park Zoo’s 14-year-old female gray wolf, Shila, has received a pacemaker in an innovative and groundbreaking medical procedure to treat a life-threatening cardiac arrhythmia. The successful procedure took place June 12, and Shila is recovering well behind the scenes. While pacemakers are common treatments for humans and domestic dogs, a wolf receiving a pacemaker is extraordinarily rare. Woodland Park Zoo’s team is not aware of any previous cases and believes Shila’s pacemaker may be among the first for her species. Shila's procedure to insert this pacemaker may be among the first for her species. Background In early June, animal keepers observed concerning behavior from Shila including decreased activity and appetite, weight loss, and concerning instances of stumbling, weakness, incoordination and falling. Th
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Pawsitively Precious: Zoo Welcomes Snow Leopard Cubs 

Posted by Craig Newberry, Communications Woodland Park Zoo is seeing spots after three snow leopard cubs were born on Memorial Day, May 27, 2024. These are the first snow leopard cubs to be born at the zoo since a single cub, Aibek, was born in 2017.  Marai with her newborn cubs on the cub cam, Woodland Park Zoo The cubs were born to parents Marai, 7, and Aibek, 6. This is their first litter of cubs after they were paired under the Snow Leopard Species Survival Plan , a cooperative breeding program across accredited zoos to help ensure a healthy, self-sustaining population of the species. The mom and cubs are currently in an off-view maternity den to allow bonding and proper nursing in a quieter setting. Zoo staff closely watch the mother and cub on a den camera to watch for normal behaviors. It will be at least a couple months before the cubs are introduced to the outdoor, on-view exhibit. “As a first-time mom, Marai has amazed us with the level of care she's been giving her cub

2-month-old otter pups show off swimming skills

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications Photos by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo Woodland Park Zoo’s two river otter pups, a male and female, have aced their swimming lessons and have graduated to the outdoor pool and habitat. Guests will have the opportunity to watch the yet-to-be named pups twirling, rolling, somersaulting, dog paddling and just being otterly fun! While otters are highly skilled swimmers, moms need to teach their pups how to swim, just like humans do! For the last couple of weeks, mama Valkyrie has been giving her 2-month-old pups swimming lessons in a kiddie pool located in the off-view den. What do lessons entail for otters? Valkyrie picks up each pup by the scruff of their neck and dunks them in and out, much like dunking donuts in milk, but here it’s dunkin’ otters! In the outdoor pool, visitors may see Valkyrie still teaching the pups as she immerses them under water and brings them up for air. But please be patient. For the next several weeks, a regula

Woodland Park Zoo continues commitment to sustainability with launch of reusable cup program: New program in partnership with Levy and Bold Reuse

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications Today, June 5, is World Environment Day #GenerationRestoration. As we build a better future for wildlife and people, Woodland Park Zoo and its hospitality partner, Levy, are excited to announce a new partnership with Bold Reuse that will launch a new reusable cup program as another sustainable step closer to ending single use items at the zoo. Woodland Park Zoo and its hospitality partner, Levy, launch a new reusable cup program in a new partnership with Bold Reuse. (Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo) What can zoo visitors expect? It’s simple! All hot and cold beverages purchased at the zoo are now served in reusable cups. After visitors finish sipping a hot or cold beverage, they’ll toss their reusable cups in the new bins where Bold Reuse will sort and sanitize the reusable cups to reduce single-use plastics! In 2018, Woodland Park Zoo eliminated the sale of single-use plastics for all beverages including water, juice and soda. All the zo

A precious new arrival just in time for summer... a pudu is born!

Posted by Craig Newberry, Communications Soooo cute! The Woodland Park Zoo family just got cuter with the arrival of a tiny male pudu fawn. Pudu are the smallest deer species in the world and are native to South America.  Photo by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo The fawn, which has yet to be named, was born May 2 to parents Ted and Maggie. The birth is the pudus' fifth offspring together since they were paired under the Pudu Species Survival Plan , a cooperative breeding program across accredited zoos to help ensure a healthy, self-sustaining population of the species.  The fawn's father, Ted, is 8 years old and arrived at the zoo in 2017. The mother, Maggie, 7, came in 2018. The pair of pudu are now parents to four males and one female. All three of their previous male fawns were sent to accredited zoos across the country based on breeding recommendations created by the SSP. The female, born last year, still lives at Woodland Park Zoo. Photo by Megan Blandford/Woodland

What to expect when expecting a baby gorilla: Akenji edition!

Posted by Elizabeth Bacher, Communications Akenji is expecting her first baby soon! Photo: Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo Recently, we shared with you that Akenji, one of our female western lowland gorillas who will be 23 years old in July, is pregnant with her first baby With a birth just weeks away now—expected by the end of June or early July—we are thrilled to share for the first time, stunning ultrasound video images and stills of the little gorilla baby that will soon be joining Akenji’s extended gorilla family.  Watch video: https://youtu.be/tNNSdWwqDEQ The ultrasound procedure was overseen by Woodland Park Zoo associate veterinarian Dr. Yousuf Jafarey, and the images from it are just amazing! We can see a little hand (in a sort of “fist-bump” pose), ribs, a beating heart and some general wiggling around. Dr. Yousuf Jafarey, our associate veterinarian who oversaw the successful ultrasound procedure, tells us it's OK to interpret the above image as Akenji's bab

In time for Mother’s Day: otter pups open their eyes!

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications Photos by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren, Woodland Park Zoo A roll poly otter pup during its health check with the care team Woodland Park Zoo’s new otter mom, Valkyrie, has an early Mother’s Day present: her twin pups have opened their eyes!  The North American river otters, a female and male, were born March 29 to mom Valkyrie and dad Ziggy. The new pups currently weigh between 3 and 3½ pounds each. Otters are born blind and completely helpless, relying solely on mom for care during the first year. “We’re so happy the pups are growing and developing as they should. They’re healthy, wiggly and active pups,” said Pat Owen, an animal care manager at Woodland Park Zoo. “The pups are also beginning to take their first steps, another developmental milestone. It won’t be long before they start venturing out of the nest box.” Stay tuned for fun updates on the otter pups at www.zoo.org/zoobabies .  Valkyrie and her pups remain in an off-view, climate-controlled