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Sempurna inspires a splash of creativity!

Posted by Kirsten Pisto, CommunicationsThis summer we asked artists of all ages to put their most creative coloring skills to the test with a MyZoo baby tapir coloring contest. With nearly 100 entries, it was reaallllly hard to choose since every single entry was exploding with love for the #SeattleWatermelon and mom, Ulan. However, your Woodland Park Zoo staff have decided and here are the grand prize winners as well as honorable mentions...
Grand Prize (Ages 2-6): Troy, age 5Complete with a rainbow and excellent color choices as well as attention to detail, Troy you captured Sempurna's summertime vibes perfectly!
Honorable mention for ages 2-6:Sophie, age 5

Claire, age 6

Vanessa, age 3
Grand Prize (Ages 7-12): Zoe, age 12We loved the way Zoe treated the lush green background and her detailing in Ulan's eyes is so clever, congrats Zoe!
Honorable mention for ages 7-12:Talia, age 7
Avery, age 12
Elsa, age 8
Grand Prize (Ages 13+): Jamila, age 17We want to jump into the world Jamila has …
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Get your Master's degree through Miami University's Advanced Inquiry Program at Woodland Park Zoo

Posted by Ryan Driscoll, Lead Learning Facilitator, Woodland Park Zoo

Are you passionate about conservation? Do you want to learn more about environmental issues and take action? Are you looking for ways to engage with your community about subjects that matter? You should consider the Advanced Inquiry Program at Woodland Park Zoo.

Miami University's Advanced Inquiry Program (AIP) is an exciting web-based master’s degree program that includes experiential learning and field study offered at Woodland Park Zoo. As an advisor and facilitator of the program, I often get asked who this program is for and what types of projects students do. As we start recruitment for the 2021 cohort, I couldn’t think of a better way to highlight the diverse array of professions, interests, and projects that this program supports than to let some of our current students share some of their experiences.

I hope you leave as inspired as I always am when working with students in this program! If you are …

Gorilla family update: Kitoko is six months old!

Posted by Elizabeth Bacher, Communications
Photos and video by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren


It’s time for an update on our wonderful western lowland gorilla family, with the latest scoop from dedicated gorilla keepers, Stephanie and Judy! We wanted to start with the newest family member, little Kitoko. The 6-month-old baby boy—born to Uzumma and Kwame on March 4—is doing great and keeping his mama on her toes. You may recall that he was injured in a family scuffle several months ago, but he has recovered from that and continues to be right on track with physical and developmental milestones.


Bright-eyed and curious about everything around him, our awesome gorilla keepers tell us Kitoko seems to already recognize his name—looking towards them when they call to him. His motor skills are developing well, too. He can often be seen grasping branches, climbing on structures in his habitat (until he gets too high for comfort and quickly makes his way back down to Uzumma), reaching towards anything,…

Tree kangaroo joey, Keweng, is an auspicious symbol for conservation

Posted by Meghan Sawyer, Communications
Photos by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo
World, meet Keweng (kay-wing), or “Kay” as she is affectionately nicknamed for short! 

This sweet female Matschie’s tree kangaroo, born to mom Elanna and dad Rocket in January, is named after a village in the YUS Conservation Area (YUS) in Papua New Guinea. YUS is home to Woodland Park Zoo’s Tree Kangaroo Conservation Program, and Keweng is one of the main villages in YUS.

“Keweng is the home of Mambawe Manauno, the first landowner and former tree kangaroo hunter, who showed me tree kangaroos for the very first time in 1996,” explains TKCP founder and Director Lisa Dabek, PhD (also WPZ’s Senior Conservation Scientist). “Manauno was also the 2003 recipient of the Woodland Park Zoo Conservation Award. It’s so great to be able to pay tribute to his work with the naming of this special joey.”

Day by day, little Keweng is becoming more familiar with the world around her. She was first spotted poking h…

Snowy in August? A pair of snowy owl chicks have hatched!

Posted by Gigi Allianic

We're so excited to welcome a pair of snowy owl chicks to our zoo family, and these youngsters are all eyes! The last hatching of the species at Woodland Park Zoo’s was nine years ago. These owlets join the host of animals born or hatched at the zoo since the beginning of the Coronavirus pandemic including: a tawny frogmouth chick, a tapir calf, a gorilla baby, agouti pups, penguin chicks, scaly-sided merganser ducklings, a pudu fawn, a mountain goat kid, and more! 
First-time parents, mom June and dad Dusty, and their brood live in the Northern Trail habitat. “Mom sits on the nest most of the time, a sign of good maternal care. The owlets are beginning to venture outside the nest, so visitors may have the chance to see them on the ground,” said Kevin Murphy, an animal curator at Woodland Park Zoo
The parents were paired under the Snowy Owl Species Survival Plan, which is a cooperative, conservation breeding program across zoos accredited by the Associatio…

Class of 2020 prepares for an August graduation after a head start at the zoo

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications Photos by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo
This turtle-y awesome class of 2020 gets a head start on life!


Washington state’s population of endangered western pond turtles will be bolstered when Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) and Woodland Park Zoo release close to 29 turtles next month to the wild at local protected sites.

The turtles are a part of the collaborative Western Pond Turtle Recovery Project, a head start program initiated in 1991. It is Washington state’s longest-running species reintroduction project.
Each spring, WDFW biologists go in the field to attach transmitters to adult female western pond turtles and monitor them every few hours during the nesting season to locate nesting sites; the nests are protected from predators with wire exclosure cages. A portion of the eggs are collected in late summer and the hatchlings are given a head start on life under the care of Woodland Park Zoo and Oregon Zoo where …

Baby boom continues with new tawny frogmouth chick

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications

We've had a very productive spring and summer here at Woodland Park Zoo with the births and hatchings of so many little ones. The newest addition to our baby boom is a tawny frogmouth chick! The new chick represents the 38th frogmouth hatched at the zoo since the species’ first hatching in 2009. The zoo is currently home to seven adult tawny frogmouths.


Tawny frogmouths are nocturnal birds native to Australia. During the day, they perch on tree branches, using their cryptic camouflage to blend into their environment. The plumage of the tawny frogmouth is silver-gray, slightly paler below, streaked and mottled with black and rufous. Frogmouths are often mistaken as owls; although they have many habits similar to owls, they are actually more closely related to nightjars and whip-poor-wills, and do not have the strong, curved talons of owls. 

The new tawny frogmouth chick hatched to first-time parents, both 2 years old. The parents were paired …