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Showing posts from February, 2016

Leap frogs for Leap Day!

Posted by: Kirsten Pisto, Communications
Video and photos by: Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo

Every four years, Leap Day occurs on the 29th of February to round out our Gregorian calendars. With 6 extra hours accumulating each year, Leap Day serves as an “extra” day to make up for our not-exactly-even trips around the sun. 
To help fill your 24 leaping hours, we bring you a closer look at the anatomy of a leap. With a little help from some very special creatures, a slow motion camera and a lot of patience (have you ever tried directing a frog?) here is a closer look at what it takes to leap.

A frog’s leap can make the difference in its survival, the difference in becoming prey or catching prey. With a myriad of potential predators, including birds, fox, cats, snakes and people, as well as a host of elusive prey such as crickets, spiders, worms and fish—it’s no wonder frogs have mastered the art of a fast leap.
Whether in an attempt to elude a predator or catch a bite, frogs r…

Growing up gorilla

Posted by: Stephanie Payne-Jacobs, Zookeeper



While the experience of providing hands-on care for a baby gorilla is unique and rewarding, it’s with mixed emotions that keepers and Animal Health staff have taken on this responsibility. The ultimate goal of our current long hours and intense focus is to see the baby integrated into her true gorilla family.

Until then, raising Nadiri’s baby in close proximity to her family reminds us that our biggest priority is to raise her as a gorilla, and to instill in her an understanding that she is indeed one of the amazing gorillas that she sees, smells and hears throughout the day.

In this update, I’d like to provide a glimpse into the progress we are making toward that goal in our work behind the scenes.


Over the three months since giving birth, Nadiri continues to develop a relationship with her baby, which evolves as the baby goes through weekly developmental changes. Keepers are fostering this relationship via the three daily visits between N…

Please take our exhibit survey

Posted by: Bruce W. Bohmke, Acting President and CEO



We’re asking for your thoughts about the zoo’s next major exhibit project. Will you take a few minutes to complete our survey?

Woodland Park Zoo is redeveloping a 3.4-acre area of its Tropical Asia zone formerly occupied by the Elephant Forest exhibit. This large space allows us to explore exhibit ideas that could include a diverse range of Asian wildlife species. Your input will help guide the process as we identify new conservation ambassador species for the zoo and dynamic experiences that will connect you with these animals and the threats they face in the wild.

As stewards of the zoo, we’re working hard to fulfill the zoo’s Long Range Physical Development Plan and renovate and update older areas of the zoo for you and our community at large. Last year, we opened Banyan Wilds with new exhibits for Malayan tigers and sloth bears. This year, we’re bringing back butterflies in a new exhibit near Zoomazium. We’re also very pleased a…

Quiz: Are you an expert on the nature of love?

Posted by: Kirsten Pisto, Communications

All you smitten kittens, it's time to test how wild at heart you really are. We challenge you to take our new ‎Valentine's Day‬ quiz to see how well you understand the nature of love.

Then join us for an early Valentine's Day celebration on Sat., Feb. 13 when it's time for bouquets, sweet treats and ruby red delights for the animals as keepers hand out valentines to our wild bunch.


Bring in the New Year Monkey-Style

Posted by: Kristin Quirk, Education

Today marks the beginning of Chinese or Lunar New Year and 2016 is the Year of the Monkey. What better place to celebrate than Woodland Park Zoo? We’ll be celebrating with holiday and primate-themed activities in Zoomazium and the Tropical Rain Forest exhibit now through Sunday, February 14.


Those born in the Year of the Monkey are said to be smart, energetic, happy, curious and enthusiastic. They are also known for having a great memory, being self-confident and good at puzzles. Curious about your Chinese zodiac sign or what an ang pow is? Pop into Zoomazium this week for Chinese New Year inspired crafts, activities and fun.

Now, all monkeys are primates but not all primates are monkeys. So, what is the difference between a monkey and an ape, and what exactly is a lemur? Join us for a daily primate tour of the Tropical Rain Forest through Sunday to find out. We’ll depart from Zoomazium at 1:30 p.m. each day and pick up additional tour members at th…

How would a middle schooler design anti-poaching solutions? ZooCrew students offer fresh conservation perspectives

Posted by: Caitlin Potter, Education



For young minds, learning doesn’t stop when the school bell rings and subjects like biology and engineering can really come to life in hands-on experiences beyond the classroom. The projects and advisors behind ZooCrew, our after-school program serving middle school age students through schools and community centers, give students early and positive exposure to how STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) can improve their world, like in our most recent quarter that tackled a pressing conservation issue: poaching.

For 8 weeks last fall, ZooCrew students at three Seattle middle schools, Asa Mercer International, Washington and Denny International, studied the African savanna. In addition to playing educational games, meeting live animals and learning about careers in science, ZooCrew students delved into the topic of poaching. We learned about this complex issue by exploring the different perspectives of people involved in poaching, from the…