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Showing posts from November, 2013

Thanksgiving: Woodland Park Zoo style

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Communications Photos: Dennis Dow/Woodland Park Zoo From all of us here at Woodland Park Zoo, we give thanks to you—our amazing pack of wild-at-heart animal lovers who have helped make this world-class zoo a community tradition for 114 years. Of course, you can’t celebrate Thanksgiving without a feast and friends to share it with. So as you belly up to your perfectly set table to enjoy your holiday spread, allow us to start the meal off with an animal-inspired toast. [ Raise a glass ] Dearest friends… …Here’s to a drool-worthy Thanksgiving feast… …May your meal taste better than cardboard and may your guests not ruin your centerpiece… …May you wolf down your first serving so you can get to seconds. Then thirds… …Table manners aside, may you dive head first into the comforts and joys of the season... …And may your holidays be filled with tender moments. Cheers!

A matter of taste

Posted by: Kirsten Pisto, Communications Photos: Dennis Dow/Woodland Park Zoo For Thanksgiving dinner, you might consider your guests before planning the menu. Aunt Penelope prefers mashed potatoes, cousin Yanos prefers yams. But, what if your dinner guests turned out to be a pack of hungry animals?  A snow leopard prepares to dine. Different animals have different reasons for prioritizing some tastes over others, and it all comes down to evolution and survival; which foods will provide the quickest and most nutritious meal? Taste is a complex issue and tends to be shaped by evolution and environment. Here is a test: think of a time when you were really hungry, practically starving. Now, from the choices below, which meal would you have picked? Buttery, chocolate fudge ice cream in a hand-built waffle cone with sea-salt infused caramel drizzle, cocoa sprinkles and a dollop of heavenly whipped cream.  A hand tossed, crisp pizza pie topped with virgin olive oil and hot

Patas monkey friendship is blossoming

Posted by: Kirsten Pisto, Communications Meet our newest pair of patas monkeys ! Acacia, an 8-year-old female from Kentucky, and SeiKei, a 4-year-old male from California have been successfully introduced and have been spending some quality time on the African Savanna together. Acacia, relaxing in the leaves. Photo: Dennis Dow/Woodland Park Zoo. SeiKei, looking out over the savanna from his rocky perch. Photo: Dennis Dow/Woodland Park Zoo. First, zookeepers introduced the monkeys to each other through a mesh enclosure to be sure they were not aggressive with one another. The monkeys spent time looking at each other and showed positive interactions through the mesh. It is not always easy to tell if two animals will get along, but fortunately these two showed encouraging behaviors right away. Next the patas monkeys were each given access to the exhibit on their own so they could get used to the environment and scout it out. Finally, they were placed together in t

Celebrating Thanksgiving and football with zoo events

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Communications While we all get ready to mash the potatoes and whip the pie toppings, Woodland Park Zoo's carnivores are lining up for a Thanksgiving meal with considerably fewer trimmings. What happens next isn't pretty. Photo: Stan Milkowski/Woodland Park Zoo. Turkey Toss returns November 23 with a feast for the beasts. The turkey treats, while perhaps less elegantly prepared than our home-cooked Thanksgiving meals, certainly get us in the spirit of the season! Watch the jaguars, snow leopards and other meat eaters tackle their turkeys and see those carnivorous instincts in the raw. Then the spirit of the season continues with our annual Apple Cup discount , welcoming Cougs and Dawgs to the zoo with a special offer for football fanatics.  Asian elephant Chai enjoys Dawg- and Coug-themed treats to celebrate Apple Cup. That's right, you can celebrate the state football rivalry game by heading to the zoo! From November 25-Dec

Walk with me through Tiger Country

Posted by: Fred Koontz, PhD, Vice President of Field Conservation These days, bad news is easy to come by in stories about tiger conservation. But I’d like to show you how the power of ordinary, caring people is changing that. Recently, I joined a group of folks in Malaysia dedicated to protecting tiger landscapes from the grip of wildlife criminals. Come with me on a CAT Walk through tiger country and see for yourself what conservation in a tiger hotspot looks and feels like. With massive, towering trees, Taman Negara National Park, created in 1939, is often referred to as the crown jewel of the world’s rain forests. Estimated to be 130 million years old, it is nearly twice as old as the Amazon rain forest. Woodland Park Zoo is part of a new, 10-year project with Panthera and Malaysian colleagues to save Malayan tigers in and around this park. Photo: Fred Koontz/WPZ.  BOOTS ON THE GROUND Last June, on a Malaysian site visit for WPZ’s Field Conservation Department , I joine

Ivory crush sends a message about wildlife trafficking

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Communications Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will crush six tons of confiscated ivory, representing thousands of elephants killed to fuel the illegal ivory trade all over the world, including the U.S. While the ivory destroyed was not actively in the market and won’t directly affect supply or demand, it does send a message: end the trade, save the elephants. Learn more about ivory trafficking. The good news from our conservation partner, the Tarangire Elephant Project in Tanzania, is that your support has helped them increase poaching patrols , which has led to the arrest of 10 poachers this year. With tougher laws and enforcement, increased efforts on the ground, and a commitment from you to never buy ivory, we can keep the good news coming. Share this post if you share hope with us that we can make a difference!

Happy 1st Birthday, Cublets!

Posted by Kirsten Pisto, Communications   Happy Birthday dear Nobuhle, Busela, Pelo and Rudo! Our foursome of frisky lion cubs celebrated their first trip around the sun today with a lot of gnawing, pawing and yes…yawning.     Photo by Ryan Hawk/ Woodland Park Zoo.                                 The cubs were born one year ago on November 8th. Today, the young lions received balls and bones in specially scented boxes as well as their favorite treat, bloodsicles (frozen carnivore ice pops) to celebrate their 1st birthday.   Here’s a recap of the birthday party antics:   Zookeeper Christine Fenwick started prepping for the event early this week by painting the large cardboard boxes in which to hide the birthday prizes. “The cubs have never had boxes this large,” she explained. “They are going to love ripping into them!” Christine painted the boxes with a simple non-toxic acrylic, safe for cub handling. Photo by Kirsten Pist