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Showing posts from March, 2018

Zoo mourns sudden passing of gorilla Leo

Posted by: Gigi Allianic

Leonel, a male gorilla fondly called Leo, passed away last night at age 40 after a brief illness. The upper middle-age gorilla had been under a 24-hour care this week. He died in his off-view sleeping den.

On Monday, the 360-pound gorilla had no interest in food or drink, and did not want to leave his den to go outdoors. The zoo’s animal health team did a visual assessment and a 24-hour treatment plan that included medications, hydration, hand feeding and observation. Plans to anesthetize him yesterday for a diagnostic exam were canceled because Leo had shown significant signs of improvement. “Leo drank and ate a lot and urinated, a positive sign of hydration. Also, his activity levels increased and we even observed play behavior, so we believed he was on the mend,” said Nancy Hawkes, PhD, Woodland Park Zoo’s director of animal care. “We continued monitoring him overnight. Unfortunately, he died suddenly in the presence of one of his gorilla keepers and close …

Fluffy news: 2-week-old crested screamer chicks growing strong

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications
Video by Kirsten Pisto, photos by John Loughlin, Woodland Park Zoo

A pair of crested screamer birds hatched in early March. 


A pair of crested screamer birds, both females, hatched in early March. The chicks represent the first offspring between the 15-year-old mother and 23-year-old father. The last successful hatching of this species at the zoo was in 2002.

The little chicks are busy stretching their long legs, soaking up the spring sunshine and eating lots of broccoli florets, among other snacks such as a blend of game bird, romaine lettuce and waterfowl pellets.

The crested screamer family is currently off public view to allow animal keepers to monitor the chicks closely and weigh them regularly to ensure acceptable weight gains. At 2 weeks old, the chicks are fluffy and downy and currently weigh 6 ounces. “So far, we’re pleased to report the chicks are experiencing good weight gains,” said Mark Myers, bird c…

Three little beauties: Visayan warty pigs

Posted by Elizabeth Bacher, Communications

Warty pigs may not have the prettiest name, but we think they are beautiful! If you haven't stopped by the Trail of Vines lately, you should. Our three female pigs are especially active in early spring.

This critically endangered forest pig is found only in the Visayan islands of the Philippines. The relatively small, grayish-brown pigs get their name from three pairs of fleshy “warts” that develop on the cheeks of adult males, but they are best recognized by the white stripe that runs over the bridge of the nose behind the mouth. Mature males also grow a stiff, spiky mane of hair tufts that make them look like the punk-rockers of the pig world.
In the wild, Visayan warty pigs used to roam over six different islands of the Philippines, but they’ve lost more than 95% of that habitat due to logging and agriculture. Populations have also dwindled because people hunt them and they come into conflict with farmers as crop-raiding pests. T…

We're on a new mission

Posted by: Alejandro Grajal, PhD, President and CEO

Your enduring loyalty and support mean you care deeply about Woodland Park Zoo’s future and the value it creates for your family and for the community you love. Since coming aboard at the zoo, I’ve been on a learning tour—listening to the community’s hopes and dreams for this 92-acre oasis, and ways the zoo can shape the future of wildlife conservation.

We are all wrestling with a difficult truth: Our impact on this planet is profound and pervasive. In reality, all wildlife and wild places are now in human care. We have been asking ourselves: what more can we, as a modern conservation zoo, do with this responsibility?

In a region renowned for its innovative, out-of-the-box thinking and strong environmental ethic, a lot, it turns out.

Watch: We're on a Mission, produced by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo.

You spoke. We listened. Last summer, I asked the zoo’s Board of Directors and staff to hold conversations with the commun…

Zoo hosts National Geographic Photo Ark exhibition by Joel Sartore

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications

If you've seen Joel Sartore's images before, you know just how captivating a single photograph can be. Whoa.

Woodland Park Zoo will host the traveling exhibition, “National Geographic Photo Ark,” from April 20 through October 7. The National Geographic Photo Ark is an ambitious project committed to documenting every species in zoos, aquariums and animal rescue centers—inspiring people not just to care, but also to help protect these animals for future generations.

Featuring the work of National Geographic photographer and Fellow Joel Sartore, National Geographic is showcasing this important project through multiple platforms. This exhibition is organized by the National Geographic Society and Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium.

A compelling and visually powerful project, the National Geographic Photo Ark aims to photograph species before it is too late. In addition to creating an archival record for generations to come, this project is…