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Showing posts from May, 2017

From zoo camper to zoologist

Roxanne Sanders, a first-grader, was new to Seattle when her mom signed her up for a summer camp at Woodland Park Zoo so she could make some friends.

However, Roxanne made more than friends. She found she liked exploring the zoo and the fact that there was more to the camp than just keeping the kids busy.

“They taught you lessons about the animals, where they came from, how they live,” Roxanne said. “We got to see what the animals were doing and how they reacted.”

Zoo camps became part of Roxanne’s life. She attended Zooper Day Camp for kids 4 to 9, then Zoo U for kids 10-14. In 2010, she became a counselor in training, and now, as a college student, she’s working as a camp assistant.


“Throughout elementary school, I knew I wanted to work with animals,” Roxanne said, “When I started thinking about college a few years ago, my parents were pushing me into medical jobs, but that wasn’t what I was interested in. I decided to go with what I wanted to do – zoology.” 
I’m studying zoology an…

A baby with a big job

Posted by: Bobbi Miller, WPZ Field Conservation Coordinator with Stephanie Fennessy, Giraffe Conservation Foundation Director



Here at Woodland Park Zoo we’re all twitterpated about the impending birth of Seattle’s tallest baby. But we’re not the only folks waiting for the giraffe calf. Halfway across the world, in Windhoek, Namibia, Steph and Julian Fennessey are anxiously awaiting word of our new arrival.

As founders of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, a Woodland Park Zoo Wildlife Survival Fund project, they are working to understand and save the remaining giraffe in the wild. It’s a daunting task, but the birth of Tufani’s wee one (if you can call a 6 foot, 150 pound baby a “wee one”) gives them hope for the remaining giraffes in the wild. With every giraffe born in an Association of Zoos and Aquariums-accredited zoo, more people become aware of the plight of giraffes in the wild. With awareness comes passion, and with passion comes conservation. As William Barclay said, “There a…

Birth watch begins for Seattle's pregnant giraffe

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Editor


The signs are there: Tufani is acting restless, her appetite is reduced, and we have observed changes in her udder. She could give birth to Seattle's tallest baby any day now. Or within the week. Or hey, who knows. It's not an exact science.

Lead keeper Katie Ahl tells us more:

Video: Birth watch begins for Seattle's pregnant giraffe
With a gestation period of 14 to 15 months, the birth window for a giraffe is wide. We've been expecting to see the new arrival appear sometime between May and July. According to the 3,000 of you who entered our giraffe baby pool contest (now closed), most thought we'd see him or her in June. But we could have a new bundle of joy sooner!

Keeper Katie first took note of the changes in Tufani's behavior earlier this week. She noted “Tufani has been given daily opportunities to cross from the corral to the African Savanna exhibit with the other two giraffes, but has chosen to stay behind in the corral…

MyZoo Kids' Backyard Creatures Contest

Posted by Kirsten Pisto, Communications

Calling creative kids and backyard explorers...

There are all sorts of enchanting creatures that live right in your backyard! From blue and green bees to magnificent butterflies, silky smooth worms to beautiful beetles—many cool animals help pollinate, fertilize and enrich your garden. If you could design a backyard creature, what would it look like?

The MyZoo Kids' Backyard Creatures contest invites kids to design their own inspired creatures, whether real or imagined we can't wait to see what you create!


Enter and you could win: Grand prize (ages 7-10): a zoo sleepover experience for you and your favorite adult in August 2017. Grand prize (ages 3-6): an orangutan ZooParent adoption and plush. Two lucky runners up (all ages) will receive a Woodland Park Zoo t-shirt and 2 giraffe experience tickets.
Use your imagination to create your own backyard creature. Fill in the white space using pen, crayon, paint, makers… anything goes! How many creat…

Now you can charge your electric vehicle when you visit Woodland Park Zoo

Posted by: Alissa Wolken, Communications


Woodland Park Zoo turned a shade greener with the unveiling of new Light & Charge electric vehicle stations. The stations are the first of 20 to be installed around Seattle, representing a $1.2 million investment by ReachNow, the mobility services division of the BMW Group.

Seattle is the first city in North America to receive the Light & Charge stations, which turn existing streetlights into electric vehicle (EV) charging stations. With more than 1 million annual visitors coming through Woodland Park Zoo, that’s a lot of visibility for the benefits of EVs and car sharing.


Green is a color we wear well. Sustainability is at the core of Woodland Park Zoo's mission to save animals and their habitats. By stewarding resources and reducing our impact we not only help wildlife, but also serve as a living classroom for others to discover sustainable practices to try at home or in their own communities.

Zoomazium was the nation’s first zoo …

Happy 20th birthday to hornbill Blueberry!

Posted by Alissa Wolken, Communications

It’s a milestone year for one of our long-time residents. Blueberry, our beloved knobbed hornbill, celebrates her 20th hatchday (that’s bird speak for birthday) on Sunday, May 7, 2017. You can stop by the Friends by Nature program at the Alvord Broadleaf Theater that day (11:00 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.) to wish Blueberry a happy 20th!

Video: Happy Birthday Blueberry! Blueberry enjoys some of her favorite treats:blackberries, grapes and, of course, blueberries.

It’s hard to believe it’s been 20 years since Blueberry hatched right here at Woodland Park Zoo. Just think, in 1997 Notorious B.I.G.’s “Hypnotize” and Hanson’s “MMMBop” were at the top of the Billboard charts and “The Fifth Element” and “The Lost World: Jurassic Park” ruled the box office. My how time flies.
Turning 20 isn’t the only thing Blueberry is celebrating; the hatchday girl is also a new member of the ambassador animals all-star team at the zoo and can be seen regularly in the Friends by…