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Pudu power

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Communications

What happens when the Ballard Pudus—a local youth soccer team—meet the Woodland Park Zoo pudus? Pure, pudu magic.

The Ballard Pudus, an official Ballard Youth Soccer team made up of 7-8 year olds, got a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet their namesake behind the scenes at Woodland Park Zoo last month.

The pudu, a South American deer, and, in fact, the world’s smallest species of deer, may not always get the spotlight. But 7-year-old Anna has had a lifelong love of pudus, making them her number one animal to look for whenever she visits the zoo. So when her Ballard Youth Soccer Team had a chance to come up with a team name, Anna used her pudu-passion to convince her teammates to take on the unique moniker.

The oddly named soccer team may draw some puzzled looks on the field, but their team name actually helps to promote knowledge about this little known endangered species. After meeting the zoo’s pudus and talking to their keepers, the soccer youths are more prepared than ever to spread the word and promote pudu preservation!

You may remember hearing about our pudus earlier this year when a baby was born in May. To check them out, visit the pudu exhibit next to the flamingo exhibit in the Temperate Forest area of the zoo. And don't miss this great video taken of the pudu baby at one day old: