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Showing posts from March, 2015

Hop, skip and jumpy to Bunny Bounce 2015

Posted by: Gigi Allianic, Communications

Hop, skip and bounce to Woodland Park Zoo for egg hunts on the North Meadow and Easter-themed treats for the zoo’s animal residents at the 14th annualBunny Bounce, Sat., April 4, 2015, 9:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
The spring event offers amazing egg hunts for children ages 1 to 8, crafts, bunny encounters, and eggs-citing zoo programs throughout the day.

Space for egg hunts might be limited and is open on a first-come, first-served basis.As part of the zoo’s conservation mission, families must bring their own egg hunt basket or reusable bag. For the health and well-being of the zoo’s animals, candy will not be placed inside the eggs—egg hunt participants will receive their treats as they exit the zoo.

While the kiddies hunt for eggs, the orangutans, meerkats, lions, and other wildlife residents will nibble on specially made Easter baskets lined with flowers, berries and other favorite treats.

The Easter-themed treats are part of the zookeepers’ ong…

Gorilla dating game

Posted by: Stephanie Payne-Jacobs, Zookeeper

Calaya joins the dating game As animal caretakers, the daily welfare of the gorillas is our highest priority, but looking ahead and planning for the future of each gorilla is just as important.

Such long term plans may revolve around future breeding opportunities, socially appropriate groupings or age related concerns. At the heart of this planning is making sure we meet the mental and physical health of each individual, while also assuring the genetic sustainability and health of the population.

Recently, Woodland Park Zoo had to say goodbye to a member of the gorilla family due to a match-making opportunity that we felt was in the gorilla’s best interest.

In late February, Calaya, a young adult female gorilla from Vip’s group, was transferred to National Zoo in Washington D.C. as part of a breeding recommendation by the Species Survival Plan (SSP). The SSP is a cooperative breeding program across conservation zoos designed to maintain t…

New research outlines the road to coexisting with wildlife

Story by Ariel Mark, contributor
Originally published by; republished in part via The Global Forest Reporting Network

Habitat loss and illegal hunting are leading drivers behind mammal population decline and extinction in the tropical forests of Southeast Asia. But what's driving these drivers? Road infrastructure, according to research. Dr. Reuben Clements* from James Cook University, along with his colleagues, conducted the first-ever comprehensive study examining the impacts of road infrastructure on mammal populations in Southeast Asia. Their findings were recently published in PLOS One.

Roads pose extreme environmental challenges, particularly for conservation efforts in the global south, where roads are often intertwined with economic growth and habitat degradation. From just 2005 to 2010, Southeast Asian landscapes saw an increase of total paved roads from 16 to 51 percent, according to data from the World Bank. 
Southeast Asian countries are aston…

Vote online to help save tigers

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Editor


Wow! Thanks for showing your stripes for tigers—your online votes from earlier this week helped our on-the-ground conservation partner, MYCAT, win funding to expand anti-poaching patrols in Malaysia.

It's amazing what we can do when we join forces as a community with partners in the field to fight for a better future for wildlife! 


Woodland Park Zoo and Panthera work together with on-the-ground partners in Malaysia to protect tigers and their forests—and now one of those partners needs your help!

MYCAT (Malaysian Conservation Alliance for Tigers) needs your vote to receive $30,000+ to expand its CAT Walks program, where trained volunteers trek through Malaysia’s rain forests looking for signs of poachers. Snares and traps are recorded, deactivated and reported to the authorities.

This is critical work: the more eyes in the forest and boots on the ground, the more opportunity we have to deter poaching.

To support tiger conserva…

Cats on a plane!

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Editor

Malayan tiger brothers Liem, Eko and Olan arrived from Little Rock Zoo via FedEx cargo shipping last night!

Keepers picked up the boys at Sea-Tac Airport and brought them to their new digs here at Woodland Park Zoo. They'll be getting settled behind the scenes before the all new Banyan Wilds exhibit opens May 2.

The tigers, each traveling in their own crate, were brought to a behind the scenes area at the zoo specialized for big cats. They were accompanied on their journey by their keepers from Little Rock Zoo who helped them settle in with us.

One by one we unloaded the crates into the holding area, allowing the tigers to step out from their crates and into their dens.

Two of the brothers were fairly quick to exit their crates, but one was quite cautious about the whole matter. Noticing their brother still inside, the two came to visit him and tried to get him to join them, walking in and out of his crate and showing him the way out into their n…

Anti-poaching program goes national in Kyrgyzstan

Posted by: Snow Leopard Trust, a Woodland Park Zoo Partner for Wildlife

Editor’s note: The Snow Leopard Trust’s work in Kyrgyzstan is in collaboration with Woodland Park Zoo, with special support from Partnership Funding by Fondation Segré, managed by the Whitley Fund for Nature.

Less than a year after launching a pilot program to fight poaching of endangered snow leopards and their prey in Kyrgyzstan, the Snow Leopard Trust and its partners are ‘going national’ to cover all 19 of the country’s state parks and nature reserves, thanks to a grant from the UK government’s Illegal Wildlife Trade Challenge Fund.

The project, known as the Citizen-Ranger Wildlife Protection Program (CRWPP), trains, publicly honors, and financially rewards park rangers and local community members who successfully apprehend illegal hunters.

It addresses one of the most persistent threats to snow leopards and their prey species in the Central Asian countries: poaching by outsiders.

The Snow Leopard Trust has bee…

Farewell to Sunny the otter

Posted by: Gigi Allianic, Communications

For the past couple of decades, a female river otter named Salishan enchanted visitors with her energetic diving, gliding and cuteness. Now we say goodbye to the otter keepers fondly called "Sunny."

Sunny was humanely euthanized today at the age of 19 following a period of declining health and lethargy. River otters live 8 to 10 years in the wild and 18 to 20 years in zoos.

The zoo’s consulting veterinary cardiologist, Dr. Jerry Woodfield with Northwest Cardiology Consultants, diagnosed the otter a year ago with age-related congestive heart failure. She was given a prognosis of three to six months to live but survived another 12 months.

“Targeted treatment, close monitoring, excellent supportive care, and lots of TLC by our keeper and veterinary staff all contributed to giving Salishan a very good quality of life for the past year,” said Dr. Kelly Helmick, Woodland Park Zoo’s associate veterinarian. “Rarely do we get to successfully m…

Jaguars and otters help Girl Scouts celebrate a 40-year-old icon

Photos by Stan Milkowski/Woodland Park Zoo

Junior the jaguar encountered a 40-year-old icon in his exhibit: the samoa cookie! As Girl Scouts of Western Washington celebrate the 40th birthday of the popular cookie, Junior received a giant samoa-inspired piñata stuffed with fish and topped with real coconut. We admit: it’s not exactly the same recipe the Girl Scouts use!

Next up the Asian small-clawed otter family proved their ability to turn anything into a game when they got their hands—and teeth, and feet, and tails—onto, into and all over an empty box of the iconic cookies.

Girl Scouts of Western Washington has been a great supporter of the zoo throughout the years—they have volunteered hours of service, contributed cookie fund donations, and joined us for many of our own zoo celebrations. They came to party, and the Girl Scouts who attended were decked out in cookie-inspired party gear!

You can follow the party all week long by looking for #SamoaSightings on Facebook, Twitter and I…