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We will miss you greatly, sweet Goodwyn the elk

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications Woodland Park Zoo has said goodbye to its only male elk, Goodwyn. The 20-year-old elk was euthanized due to a significant decline in health and quality of life. The life expectancy for elk in human care is 18 to 22 years; in their natural range, 16 years. Majestic Goodwyn in 2018, photo by Dennis Dow/Woodland Park Zoo According to Dr. Tim Storms, director of animal health at Woodland Park Zoo, the geriatric elk had been declining in mobility and losing weight for several months, which is not uncommon for aging animals. “We did a complete exam of Goodwyn in March, including radiographs of his limbs, and found arthritic changes in multiple joints, especially his knees. We initiated a formal process to evaluate his quality of life and track indicators of his welfare daily. This is a standard process that we activate for any individual once there is a concern for its well-being,” said Storms. “Goodwyn’s caretakers had him under close observation and
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Kaa is our main squeeze for World Snake Day!

Posted by Elizabeth Bacher, Communications Photos: Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo Hello, Kaa! Snakes "smell" with their tongues, or more precisely use them to pick up scents in the air.  July 16 is World Snake Day, a day to appreciate these amazing and often misunderstood reptiles. All over the world, snakes play a vital role in maintaining balance in ecosystems—both as predators and as prey. Who better to serve as an ambassador for all of snake-dom than Kaa, our 19-year-old, male reticulated python. Our animal keepers estimate that Kaa is currently around 17 feet long and probably weighs between 125-135 pounds. Kaa—who is named after the Jungle Book character—arrived at Woodland Park Zoo 11 years ago and he currently lives in a habitat maintained just for him in the Trail of Vines area right next to our orangutan habitat. Reticulated pythons are native to southeast Asia and, when full grown, are among the longest snakes in the world—and they keep growing throughout

Zoo takes in orphaned brown bear cub from Alaska

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications Photos and video by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo Woodland Park Zoo is beary excited to welcome an orphaned brown bear cub to its home and family. The female cub, who currently weighs 89 pounds, was found roaming alone on an air force base near Anchorage, Alaska. She traveled via Alaska Air Cargo and arrived at the zoo July 13. Hello, little sweetheart! We are so lucky to be able to give you a home in the Living Northwest Trail. The new cub, who has yet to be named, was born this past winter and is assumed to be a singleton. Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADFG) had received multiple reports of sightings of the lone cub; once they confirmed the mom was nowhere to be found and the cub was too young to survive on her own, they moved forward to lure the bear to safety.  A culvert trap on a trailer bed was used. “Usually bears have a sweet tooth, so we tried drawing her in with glazed donuts. However, this cub showed no interest in the

Gorilla update: get the inside scoop on how our new group is doing behind the scenes!

Posted by Elizabeth Bacher, Communications with contributions from gorilla keepers Shawn Bell, Stephanie Payne and Judy Sievert. Hello, Jamani! Photo: North Carolina Zoo You may have heard about the recent  arrival of three new gorillas  at Woodland Park Zoo. They all came within the last month or so and are forming a new family group with 37-year-old Jumoke, who has been living alone since Vip (her male companion) died last year due to age-related medical issues. Olympia, Jamani and Nadaya! Photos of Olympia and Jamani by North Carolina Zoo, photo of Nadaya by Saint Louis Zoo. The two new females are 26-year-old Olympia and 22-year-old Jamani (pronounced juh-MAW-nee). They already know each other well and came here together from North Carolina Zoo. The new male is 21-year-old Nadaya (nuh-DIE-yuh) who came here from Saint Louis Zoo. It might be another week or so before you’ll be able to see the new gorillas on the public side of their habitat, so in the meantime we wanted to share som

New Pollinator Garden unveiled at Washington State Capitol!

Posted by Craig Newberry, Communications Photos by Craig Newberry, Woodland Park Zoo A new pollinator garden to support thriving butterflies, bees and birds was unveiled June 22 at the Washington State Capitol Campus in Olympia. The garden was created in partnership between the Office of Governor Jay Inslee, Washington Department of Enterprise Services (DES), Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), Washington Department of Agriculture (WSDA), Woodland Park Zoo (WPZ), and the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.  Erin Sullivan speaks at the unveiling of the capitol pollinator garden. The garden features pollinator-attracting plants to provide food, water and shelter to pollinators, and has beautiful signage that informs visitors about the critical role of pollinators and how to attract and protect them. It covers a combined space of roughly 1,000 square feet in the heart of the Capitol Campus over the 14th Ave. tunnel. The garden will provide a peaceful and quiet spo

Meet the newest members of our zoo family: a pair of cutie coatis!

Posted by Elizabeth Bacher, Communications Photos by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren Co-WHAT-i is a coati? Hello, cutie coati! If you’ve visited the recently reopened Tropical Rain Forest building, you may have noticed a couple fresh faces there! A pair of white-nosed coatis, Onix and Pearl, are the first of their species to live at Woodland Park Zoo. The white-nosed coati (pronounced ko-WAT-tee) is one of several recognized species of coatis. It is a house cat-sized mammal that looks a little like a raccoon—no surprise since they’re related and share the same taxonomic family classification. In the wild, the habitat of the white-nosed coati includes tropical and sub-tropical broadleaf forests ranging from Arizona down through Mexico and Central America and very top of South America. They’re not considered to be endangered in most of their range, but scientists believe their populations are decreasing due to habitat loss and deforestation. White-nosed coati, Onix, explores his new habitat. Coati

Welcome gorillas Olympia, Jamani and Nadaya!

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications We have some extremely exciting news to share... Woodland Park Zoo’s western lowland gorilla population has just gotten bigger—not by the birth of a gorilla, but the recent arrivals of two adult females and one adult male!    Olympia, Jamani and Nadaya! Photos of Olympia and Jamani by North Carolina Zoo, photo of Nadaya by Saint Louis Zoo. The females, 26-year-old Olympia and 22-year-old Jamani, arrived from North Carolina Zoo. The silverback, 21-year-old Nadaya, arrived from Saint Louis Zoo. Adult male gorillas are known as silverbacks, which in the wild and in zoos play a critical role by providing stability, protecting, leading and maintaining peace in their family group. The plan is for the new adults to form a family unit with Jumoke, a 37-year-old female gorilla who was born at Woodland Park Zoo and has had three offspring. Jumoke has been living alone since she lost her male companion, Vip, who died last year due to age-related medical is