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You're the Swan for Me

Posted by Elizabeth Bacher, Communications

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, a beautiful trumpeter swan is getting a second chance at life, and at love. Meet Sarah and Cygmond. Sarah, who is estimated to be 6 or 7 years old, was rescued after flying into power lines. Cygmond is 8 years old and recently came to Seattle from Kansas City Zoo to be a companion for Sarah. Together, they’re making their debut in a pond in the Temperate Forest habitat.


Sarah's rescue and recovery is a conservation success story—and it was a team effort. Wildlife rescuers came to her aid on Whidbey Island last summer. The Northwest Swan Conservation Association headed up her rescue along with Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) and Puget Sound Energy’s Avian Protection Program. A veterinary exam found the swan had a broken wing, was dehydrated, underweight and tested for low levels of lead poisoning.

Though they could treat her and help her heal, wildlife experts at Whatcom Humane Society’…
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Meet Olive and Clover just in time for Galentine's Day!

Posted by Elizabeth Bacher, Communications
Say hello to the newest, most beautiful warthogs—Olive and Clover. These 2 ½ year old sisters made their debut in the warthog habitat last week after coming to Seattle from Jacksonville, Florida late last year. For now, the girls are getting comfortable on the public side of their new home—while behind the scenes, they’re slowly being introduced to Dennis, our resident male warthog who will be 9 years old this spring. Eventually these three not-so-little piggies will all have access to their yard together.

Common warthogs—as the species is called—are wild members of the pig family, which are related to boars and hogs. They’re native to the grasslands, savannas, and woodlands in sub-Saharan Africa. The species name comes from the thick growths of skin that pad their wide, flat faces. They look like warts but it’s believed they actually function as padding to protect their faces during mating season battles. Since the males are the ones that d…

A Big Decision for Hippos Lupe and Lily

For all the animals in our care, we’re committed to their daily wellbeing. But we also dedicate ourselves to assuring they will continue to thrive through all the ages and stages of their lives still to come. That’s why after much discussion and consideration, zoo staff will begin the process of seeking new homes for our beloved hippos, Lily and Lupe.

Lily and Lupe have been part of our zoo family for decades, and while we will be sad to see them move, we feel that this decision is the very best thing for two of our favorite hippos in the world.

Lupe is at an appropriate age for breeding at 20 years old. Based on Lupe’s genetic makeup, she is recommended for breeding by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) so that she can help sustain a genetically healthy population. Our current hippo exhibit was designed 40 years ago to house two hippos. It was not intended as a breeding facility, and therefore the space does not allow for a male and female to be separated or have offspring…