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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Countdown to debut of new otters

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Communications

Otter kisses. Photo by Dennis Dow/Woodland Park Zoo.

In just a few days, you’ll have the chance to meet the zoo’s new pair of Asian small-clawed otters when they make their debut in the Bamboo Forest Reserve exhibit opening May 4. These are two tiny mustelids you won’t be able to resist.

Kids test out the new play area in Bamboo Forest Reserve. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

The otters will debut alongside a tropical aviary and nature play area for kids—all part of phase one of the Bamboo Forest Reserve exhibit complex.

Atop a rocky ledge, looking out over the exhibit. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

To get ready for their debut, the otters have been exploring their new home, investigating every ledge, stream and den to find all the best spots for lounging, swimming, eating and playing.

Here you can catch a glimpse of the agile fingers small-clawed otters use for hunting. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

Asian small-clawed otters are more terrestrial than their relatives, such as the North American river otters you see in our Northern Trail exhibit. Though, they do take to the water for swimming, fishing and even sipping a little refreshing drink.

The clear water is made possible by green design that uses biofiltration to clean and reuse water. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

Their water is kept clean by some clever, green engineering that turns their entire pool into a closed-loop biofiltration system. Visible on the surface is a constructed wetland that cleans and recycles pool and rain water back into the exhibit. That means we don’t have to waste any water or dump dirty water, which also keepers our own Puget Sound waterways healthier.

A glimpse of the otters' behind-the-scenes den building behind the exhibit pool. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

The sterling otter pool is one of the very first things you’ll see when you enter the Bamboo Forest Reserve exhibit, and that’s because the story of waterways is an essential place to start when telling the story of forests. Asian small-clawed otters are vulnerable in their native range throughout southern and southeastern Asia, due in large part to the contamination and loss of waterways in their forest habitat. A healthy forest needs healthy waterways—a conservation truth that applies to our own Northwest forests as well.

Peekaboo. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

Spending more and more time in the exhibit each day, the otters are beginning to adjust to their new surroundings. The 3-year-old female of the pair is a little bolder and more adventurous. She was the first to explore, and her 7-year-old male partner mostly keeps to her side. The two arrived earlier this year from other zoos, she from the Bronx Zoo and he from Zoo Atlanta, so they are taking some time to get to know each other and their new shared home. We’ll kick off a naming contest for the pair later this month.

The pair gets along swimmingly. Photo by Dennis Dow/Woodland Park Zoo.

The exhibit may seem big for two tiny otters—representing the smallest species of otters in the world—but it’s designed for a growing family. Our pair is recommended for breeding by the Species Survival Plan, a cooperative, conservation breeding program across Association of Zoos & Aquariums-accredited institutions. As the pair gets along swimmingly (rimshot!), we hope to add to the otter bunch soon!

One of the aviary birds, the great argus, shows its feathers. Photo by Mat Hayward/Woodland Park Zoo.

When you visit the otters, keep your ears tuned for the sonorous calls of the song birds in the tropical aviary behind you. More on the birds of the new exhibit later this week.

Come play with us on opening day, May 4! Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

We’ll be celebrating the grand opening of phase one of this new space on Sat., May 4 with live music, giveaways, and lots of family fun. Up next for us is phase two, which will bring new homes for Malayan tigers and sloth bears to the zoo. With continued support from the community, phase two will open in the future, completing the zoo’s largest exhibit transformation since 1996. Learn more about how to get involved at www.morewonder.org.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Baby boom continues with porcupette birth

Posted by: Caileigh Robertson, Communications
Photos by: Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo

Just when our zookeepers thought the baby boom was at bay, our porcupine pair delivered the zoo’s first ever North American porcupette (the name for a baby porcupine—and yes, the name is as cute as the baby)! Unlike the other recent births, we have to admit: we didn't see this one coming!

Our 2-year-old breeding pair, Molly and Oliver, joined Woodland Park Zoo in June 2011 shortly after their April birthdays. At such a young age, zookeepers expected that Oliver was a year shy of sexual maturity. To their surprise, Molly gave birth to a male porcupette on April 18 in the Northern Trail exhibit den! Thinking back, Molly must have become pregnant in September, giving her a seven-month gestation period before birthing the pair’s first baby.

A porcupette is born with a full coat and open eyes, contrasting many of its rodent counterparts. Within hours of birth its soft coat of quills begins to harden, immediately preparing it for protection from predators. The baby becomes active quickly and—as a natural tree dweller—its climbing instincts take hold within weeks of delivery. Climbing makes foraging easier on the young, a skill set it will exercise early in its development as it weans itself from mom and transitions to an herbivorous diet of leaves, twigs and bark.

Molly and the newborn live in a den behind the Tundra Center, though Molly sometimes leaves to stretch her legs in their exhibit. In the wild, a mother porcupine would leave the newborn to nest in a safe area on the ground and she would retreat to the trees for food and shelter. Living at the zoo, Molly has the choice to stay with the baby or take advantage of her unlimited access to their Northern Trail exhibit.

In the warmth of their den box, the pair nuzzles close to one another until the porcupette breaks free from her embrace and explores their shared space. Time and time again, mom will swoop her paws beneath his belly and pull him back to her chest for what looks a lot like a porcupine hug.

Our zookeepers are keeping a close watch on them in these earliest days, but visitors can expect to see Molly and the porcupette in their exhibit in about two short weeks.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Wild cranes get by with a little help from their friends

Posted by: Sergei M.Smirenski, Woodland Park Zoo Partner for Wildlife
Photos by Vasili Dugintsov, courtesy of Cranes of Asia

Editor note: This update just came in from Woodland Park Zoo’s Partner for Wildlife, Cranes of Asia: Muraviovka Park. The conservation project’s director, Sergei Smirenski, shares how his crew and community came together to help endangered cranes get through some hard times this spring.

Cranes salute the coming of spring.

Now that it’s spring, cranes and storks are trying to make their way back to Muraviovka Park quickly from their migration routes in order to occupy and defend their nest sites from other cranes. However, due to the unusually cold and snowy mid-spring, the southern part of the Zeya-Bureya plain in the park is still covered by more than 20 inches of snow, and lakes are frozen. The cranes and storks are arriving to find that there is no food available.

Cranes search for food in the snow.

Cranes can dig through the snow cover and survive for a while without food, but 10 days after they arrived, the conditions still hadn't changed. Desperate, some of them went searching for food along roads, some even in vegetable gardens in villages. We knew this couldn't go on for long or the cranes would starve. We needed to take action.

The team heads into the park carrying sacks of food to help the starving cranes transition into spring. 

We posted an appeal for extra support to the Russian Bird Conservation Union and sent it to our friends. Fortunately, we immediately received support from subscribers of one of the local newspapers and from the bank that the park uses. Our team used the support to buy fish in Blago and ship it to the park. With the help of farmhands and interns from Germany and Blago, we spread the fish and also wheat from the 2012 crop harvest all across the park. Directors of two nearby co-ops helped us acquire small grain and corn as well.

Spreading food across the park for the birds.

The birds ate. They ate well. And soon the snow will melt, and the spring season will be back on track for the cranes and storks. Until then, we’re grateful for the support we received to help us give these cranes and storks a leg up on the season.

Monday, April 22, 2013

BECU ZooTunes presented by Carter Subaru summer concert line-up

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Communications

See concerts, save animals! BECU ZooTunes presented by Carter Subaru is celebrating 30 years of summer concerts with this tremendous line-up for 2013:

June 23 - John Prine with Dustin Bentall and Kendel Carson
June 30 – Old Crow Medicine Show with Parker Milsap
July 7 – Huey Lewis & The News: SPORTS 30th Anniversary Tour
July 17 – John Hiatt & The Combo with Holly Williams
July 24 – An Evening With Randy Newman
July 26 – LeAnn Rimes
July 30 & 31 – Indigo Girls with Lindsay Fuller
August 7 – Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue with JJ Grey
August 11 – Todd Snider's Traveling Folk Show Featuring Shawn Mullins, Hayes Carll and Sarah Jarosz
August 15 – Loreena McKennitt
August 22 & 23 – Brandi Carlile

Tickets will go on sale online Fri., Apr. 26, at 8:00 a.m. Proceeds from ZooTunes help to support Woodland Park Zoo's animal care, education and conservation mission.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Science is a journey of discovery. Begin yours at the zoo.

Posted by: Dr. Deborah B. Jensen, President & CEO

Dr. Deborah B. Jensen. Photo by Matt Hagen.
One of the perks of my job is the daily reminder of the many pathways to science and discovery at the zoo. Each of our 300 animal species, and thousands of plant species, has a unique biology and story reflecting the way it, like millions of other creatures, has found to survive on Earth. Likewise, I’m reminded of how zoo visitors’ journeys of discovery can lead to personal insights or new knowledge, or even open pathways to careers or timely innovations. Every day, I get to watch thousands of young people, teachers and families begin this wondrous trek.

As a leader and as a scientist, I am privileged to engage our community in building pathways to a sustainable future. In many ways, today’s youth are ahead of the rest of us in recognizing the challenges our world faces, and they are looking for ways to begin designing lasting solutions.

Of the 15 global challenges identified by the Millennium Project, many require biosciences to respond to big questions with innovative solutions. How will we feed the world’s people while maintaining forests and functioning ecosystems? How can we achieve sustainable development while simultaneously avoiding the climate disruptions that will occur without alternative energy solutions? How will we improve health for humans, domestic animals and wildlife against the spread of pathogens and infectious diseases?

Scientists are studying how mosses conduct water, nitrogen and nutrients while also repelling damaging organisms for clues to sustainable innovations in building construction, agriculture and materials science. A young learner in Zoomazium’s Nature Exchange gets up close to examine this plant’s intricate and fascinating system. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

Half a century ago, these kinds of questions were just beginning to register. Since 1970, Earth Day and other efforts have been helping to increase public awareness of them. Over the course of his career, Pulitzer prize-winning Edward O. Wilson began observing a great knowledge shift and eventually proclaimed that the 21st Century would be the century of biology. Move over physics. Living systems perspectives and knowledge synthesis are yielding new ways of defining problems and the tools to address them. Because evolution has been at work for a long time, nature itself is a great place to learn about new ways to design the future.

Emerging fields such as sustainability engineering, personalized medicine and biosecurity, to name a few, are generating breakthroughs in the life sciences and related technologies. These fields are eager to embrace well-prepared thinkers and doers who must master new insight processes that emerge at the intersections between areas of inquiry we know today.

Source: Education Foundation of the Washington Roundtable and Partnership for Learning.

But is our workforce future-ready? Our nation suffers from a shortage of well-trained graduates in the STEM disciplinesscience, technology, engineering and math. Although Washington state leads the nation with the highest concentration of such jobs, it is near the bottom of states in producing people qualified to fill them. Employers and educators, policy makers and parents agree that getting young people hooked on science early, and keeping them connected through middle school, high school and the undergraduate years, are among the strongest factors influencing careers in STEM.

Woodland Park Zoo offers a host of resources and programs for K-12 learners that augment classroom curricula with hands-on science inquiry and nature experiences. These are designed to help students meet Washington’s Essential Academic Learning Requirements in science and other subjects, as well as Environmental and Sustainability Education Standards. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.
One of hundreds of ZooCorps teen volunteers and interns, Autumn has conducted research on the threatened Oregon silverspot butterfly as part of our Northwest Native Species Recovery program. She is now ecstatic about pursuing a degree in veterinary science. Photo by Erin Sullivan/Woodland Park Zoo.
The zoo and its partners bring diverse science and conservation topics to the public, including training adults and youth as citizen scientists through the amphibian monitoring program. Here a young person surveys egg masses of native amphibian species to prevent them from disappearing from our landscape. Photo by Dennis Dow/Woodland Park Zoo.

School classrooms are important venues for science learning, but constitute only a portion of the STEM learning ecosystem. Much learning occurs outside the classroom, in science-rich institutions such as Woodland Park Zoo, in parks, and in numerous natural spaces families use to spark kids’ excitement. With hands-on living classrooms, after-school partnerships, citizen science and teacher educations programs, zoos sow the seeds of curiosity for millions of people, helping them acquire and practice scientific skills. Many scientists, including myself, will tell you that zoo experiences ignited their interests in the careers they ultimately chose.

ZooCrew, a new after-school outreach program, flexes middle school students’ science and problem-solving skills by engaging them in real STEM projects with mentors from our Education, Animal Care and Conservation teams. One such project looks at wolf ecology and how our wolves use their habitat.  Photo by Woodland Park Zoo.
In one activity, ZooCrew students use the engineering design process to create solutions for animal enrichment. They ask: what materials are suitable for a particular species? Will a pulley or string work best? Then they prototype, design, improve and finally present finished products to their clients, in this case our wolves. 
Combining digital technology with staff mentoring, ZooCrew students learn how to present to and even collect data from zoo visitors on their STEM subjects, all of which fosters interest in careers in science and conservation. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

Because demand for these skills will only increase, informal science centers must play an even more vital role in the STEM ecosystem. Thus I’m pleased to tell you that Woodland Park Zoo, Seattle Aquarium, Burke Museum, IslandWood, Museum of Flight and Pacific Science Center have joined together to create the Informal Science Education Consortium.

By leveraging the power of our collaboration and strengthening school partnerships, we’ll reach more Washington youth with hands-on, inquiry-driven science learning than any of our institutions could do alone. We look forward to engaging you in our strategy and success stories in the coming months.

Walking through the zoo each day, I think about the interconnected layers of life that envelop the planet we call home. I think about how building a future our children will be proud to inherit requires new ideas and creative approaches. As millions of youth begin their science journeys at zoos each year, I know we will have lots of help to build a sustainable future for animals and people.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Calling all Instagrammers

Posted by: Caileigh Robertson, Communications

No day is ever the same at Woodland Park Zoo, and our Instagram fans are capturing the proof (with fantastic photos, might we add)! Have you seen our gorillas taking a snooze? Viewed the lion cubs on the prowl? Or aimlessly explored the zoo with one of our resident peacocks? We want to know!

Follow @woodlandparkzoo on Instagram and tag your zoo photos @woodlandparkzoo or #WoodlandParkZoo to share them with us!

Stay tuned for upcoming Instagram contests and follower photos featured on this blog and our Facebook page. They could be yours! 

From left to right, top to bottom: @r7s7c7, @sandy_bau, @vannarocchi, @xcsnx, @scrapmom521, @tiamarie7, @normajenn, @raebirdrhi, @cfellows9, @missaimee89.

Thanks for sharing your great photos, Instagrammers! We’ve dedicated a Facebook tab to your Instagram photos tagged with #WoodlandParkZoo. Check out the gallery!

Friday, April 12, 2013

A Sloth Bear Cub’s Guide to Exploring

Posted by: Kirsten Pisto, Communications

Tasha watches as one of her brave cubs climbs higher up on a log. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.
What’s better than one sloth bear cub? Two! We are so excited to share new photos of our adult sloth bear, Tasha, and her young cubs. Tasha has left the den and has been guiding her cubs outdoors, letting them climb and explore all the wonderful logs and branches. The cubs love the chance to practice their climbing and check out insect holes. Favorite pastimes seem to be sniffing out the exhibit and playing games of “King of the Branch.”
A curious cub peeks into an insect hole. Photo by Dennis Dow/WPZ.
Leaping sloth bear cub! Destination? Mom’s back; it makes a soft landing pad. The sloth bear is the only bear to carry its young on its back! Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo. 
This little cub is getting crazy and showing off some moves! Sloth bear cubs are great climbers, balancing on their large paws. We watched the little cubs scurry up logs and zip down the other sides.  Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.
The cubs seem to be searching for more honey! Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.
A little sibling rivalrythe cubs play “King of the Branch” while Tasha checks out a honey treat that the keepers left for her. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.
Tasha is a patient teacher, showing her cubs all of the places where the keepers have drizzled the most honey. Photo by Dennis Dow/Woodland Park Zoo.
Mark your calendars for May 4, when the cubs will make their official debut!

NOTE: The sloth bear exhibit is currently off view while construction is completed in the area. A temporary path will open on May 4 to give you access to see the cubs on exhibit. Until then, the cubs' time spent outside is off view to visitors. Thanks for your patience. We promise the cubs are worth the wait!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

From ideas to reality—how MyZoo Magazine is made

Posted by: Laura Lockard, MyZoo Magazine Editor-in-Chief

Have you seen the latest issue of the MyZoo member magazine?

Chock full of baby lions, behind the scenes information and a brand new kids section this latest issue was a hit!

Woodland Park Zoo’s member magazine, MyZoo, is created with the help of many zoo staff from a diverse pool of departments. Like caring for animals, cultivating beautiful gardens, and educating students, the content we produce and share with you takes heaps of teamwork and passionate individuals.

The lion cubs were an obvious story choice for the recent issue! Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

Before you see it, our editorial team starts with a theme for each issue as well as a handful of ideas. Of course we have to consider all of the timely events around the zoo, like four lion cubs being born! For the spring issue we were very fortunate to have our cubs in the spotlight helping to tell Woodland Park Zoo’s conservation story. When you have four furry babies, the storyboard starts to fill in fast!

Staff from around the zoo pitch their story ideas and we go from there. The animal curators do the heavy lifting providing scientific details and we have great additions from education, horticulture, communications, development, events, and in depth conservation stories sharing Wildlife Conservation Fund updates.

The hard part is deciding which stories to tell! Once we have a pile of stories, our editorial team makes the final decisions and does some editing and rearranging. Then off it goes to creative services team, who work their invaluable layout and design magic.

Video: MyZoo Magazine hot ON the presses. By Laura Lockard/Woodland Park Zoo.

Next up, our precious material goes to the press. The printing process is fascinating, with giant barrels of environmentally friendly ink standing at the ready, paper is spooled and the printshop smells like a pile of new books. The computer uploads the digital magazine design to plates and to the press and before you know it … an adorable lion cub graces the cover of the latest issue.

The first 16 pages of the magazine are prepped at the printshop. Photo by Laura Lockard/Woodland Park Zoo.

The first 16 pages of the magazines are dried and cooled before they go to a folding machine in line on the press. Then the second 16 pages are printed and folded. Then they are collated and stapled and ready to mail to your house, and hopefully that cub pull-out poster ends up on your wall!

Magazines getting ready for mailing. Photo by Laura Lockard/Woodland Park Zoo.

This year we are reducing our carbon footprint even more by greening up and printing on 30% post-consumer content paper which is FSC-certified. We also use a printer and mail house that are closer for less vehicle travel time. You can help us be green by sharing and passing along our magazine rather than sending it to the recycling bin when you are done.

If you would like a glossy full of insider animal news, photos of adorable zoo babies and the latest zoo events, become a member today and we will deliver right to your mailbox!

Monday, April 8, 2013

A cluster, a bloat, a rabble and a mess!

Posted by: Kirsten Pisto, Communications

Everyone has heard of an army of ants or a flock of birds, but how about a pounce of cats? A business of ferrets, a bloat of hippopotamuses, and my favorite, a float of crocodiles!

A company of budgies hangs out at Willawong Station. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

It seems as if there are as many bizarre collective nouns as there are animals to describe. An ambush of tigers, a tower of giraffes, a gam of whales, a charm of magpies!

So, why do we have so many unique collective names for animals? I mean, do we really need to say “There was a gaze of raccoons on my porch this morning”? And is there anything scientific about these terms?

A mob of meerkats! Photo by Ryan Hawk/ Woodland Park Zoo.

Giving groups of animals a special name has been a tradition since the late Middle Ages. (Might explain dray of squirrels). A lot of the blame for these bizarre words was given to prioress Dame Juliana Berners, a nun and writer, who published an essay called The Book of Saint Albans in 1486.[i] Berners was the first woman to write a book about fishing and was an expert in heraldry, hawking and hunting in England. This essay contained a long list of special collective nouns for animals as well as a few silly words for professions, such as superfluity of nuns. The Dame obviously had a fabulous sense of humor and her habit of using lyrical, poetic and humorous descriptors has endured. 

Using terms of venery, collective groupings of nouns, in everyday conversation was made popular by gentlemen in the 16th century[ii], and being able to recite them was a mark of…well, of being fancy. There was really no practical use for these terms, other than impressing your cohort.

In zoology, terms of venery are not widely used because a lot of the groups are facetious. Instead, creating collective nouns for animals has become a popular game for wordsmiths, even today.

A camp of grizzly bears, (actually, a group of bears is usually referred to as a sleuth, but here Keema and Denali are indeed visiting camp during Bear Affair). Photo by Mat Hayward/Woodland Park Zoo.

James Lipton’s book, An Exaltation of Larks describes how the game works. 
The terms of venery, Lipton explains, break down into six families: onomatopoeia (a gaggle of geese); characteristic (a leap of leopards); appearance (a knot of toads); habitat (a nest of rabbits); comment (a richness of martens); and error, which resulted from an incorrect transcription (a school of fish was originally a shoal of fish).[iii]
Next time you visit Woodland Park Zoo, look for a group of animals (or other living things) and see if you can think of a new term for their collective! We've thought of a few of our own, inspired by springtime at the zoo…

A care of keepers, a cuddle of cubs, a wonder of kids, a splash of penguins, a preserve of conservationists, a doo of poos, a blush of orchids and of course, an awesome of incoming otters

A preserve of conservationists! Zoo curator Dr. Jenny Pramuk and her band of Oregon spotted frog conservationists, at a release in 2011. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

A blush of orchids, to brighten your day! Photo by Kirsten Pisto/Woodland Park Zoo.

[i] Berners, Dame Juliana (1881 reproduction) [First published 1486]. The Boke of Saint Albans. Introduction by William Blades. London: Elliot Stockhttp://www.archive.org/details/bokeofsaintalban00bernuoft. Retrieved 2011-05-27. 
[ii] Todd, Loreto; Hancock, Ian (1986). International English Usage. Psychology Press. pp. 133–134. ISBN 0-415-05102-9http://books.google.com/books?id=iccd5KAUnYQC&pg=PA133. Retrieved 2011-04-04.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Conservation numbers add up across accredited zoos

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Communications

The Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA)—Woodland Park Zoo’s accrediting body—put out their latest Annual Report on Conservation Science, and the numbers are in. AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums contribute $160 million a year to wildlife conservation, supporting more than 2,650 conservation projects in 130 countries!

“AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums are global leaders in wildlife conservation,” said AZA President and CEO Jim Maddy, in a press release announcing the report. “While AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums provide great care to animals in their facilities, they are also working around the world to make a positive impact for many imperiled species.”

The latest Annual Report on Conservation Science shows that AZA-accredited zoos and aquarium funded an extensive range of projects, including support for anti-poaching teams in range country national parks, population assessments, research on marine mammal strandings as indicators of ocean health, support for local communities to resolve human-animal conflict, habitat restoration, campaigns against illegal bush meat hunting, training for field veterinarians, and both rearing and rehabilitating species for reintroduction into their natural habitats.

The projects focused on the conservation of 692 species representing mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, invertebrates and flora, most of which are listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as having an endangered, vulnerable or near threatened status in the wild.

Woodland Park Zoo partners with 35 field conservation projects taking place in the Pacific Northwest and around the world, accomplishing critical breakthroughs like...

YUS Conservation Area of Papua New Guinea. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

...creating Papua New Guinea’s first ever Conservation Area, protecting 180,000 acres of forest—the size of Chicago...

Zoo-reared western pond turtle is released into Puget Sound wetlands. Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.

…bringing western pond turtles back from the brink of extinction in Washington, growing the population from 100 to 1,500…

A child shows of artisan craftwork made for Snow Leopard Enterprises. Photo courtesy of Snow Leopard Trust.

…and selling ornaments made by Mongolian craftspeople, creating an alternative income to poaching endangered snow leopards

The zoo’s field conservation strategies differ from region to region, species to species, and community to community. But collectively, the impact of Woodland Park Zoo’s work with collaborators around the globe is making a more sustainable world for people, wildlife and the landscapes we share.

The unique strength that zoos have in the fight against wildlife extinction is that we’re not alone—we have you! Zoos are well positioned to reach millions each year, offering the unique opportunity for visitors to connect with nature, learn about conservation issues around the globe, and join us in taking action to make a difference for wildlife.

Video: See animals, save wildlife at Seattle's Woodland Park Zoo. 

Every time you visit Woodland Park Zoo, you have an opportunity to take action by voting for the conservation project of your choice at our Quarters for Conservation kiosks. See animals, save wildlife!