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Showing posts from July, 2018

From Cloud Forest to Reef: CEO Alejandro Grajal takes us to Papua New Guinea with the Tree Kangaroo Conservation Program

Posted by Kirsten Pisto with President and CEO, Alejandro Grajal PhD



Woodland Park Zoo President and CEO, Alejandro Grajal, PhD, recently returned from his trip to Papua New Guinea, where he explored the community and conservation impacts of Woodland Park Zoo's Tree Kangaroo Conservation Program (TKCP). His mission? Experience first-hand the TKCP community and landscape that coexist in remarkable ways, bring back some of their stories, and change the batteries on three radio collars attached to three tree kangaroos that live nearly three stories about the forest floor.

Woodland Park Zoo’s own Lisa Dabek, PhD, started the Tree Kangaroo Conservation Program over 20 years ago. Her dedication to saving species has created a network of partners and communities that protect over 160,000 acres of tropical cloud forest, villages, plantations and grasslands, as well as 100 acres of coral reef in the YUS Conservation Area. The story of how this charismatic marsupial has become the flagship …

Happy National Zookeeper Week!

Posted by Elizabeth Bacher, Communications

This whole week—which has been National Zookeeper Week—we’ve been celebrating our amazing animal keepers and showing them some love! Looking out for our animals is more than just a job for WoodlandPark Zoo’s keepers.



Most of these dedicated professionals consider their critters to be parts of their extended family—a furry, feathered, scaly and hairy family.



Among Woodland Park Zoo’s animal keeper staff, you will find scientists, researchers, educators, wildlife rehabbers, conservationists and environmental stewards.



They represent the heart and soul of what we do, caring for our animals, providing our guests with amazing experiences and just generally being awesome.



This dedicated group of professionals is passionate about conservation and animal welfare, and they love talking to zoo guests about the animals they care for.



Many of them are also incredibly funny, as you can see here, where they’re having fun recreating some of their favorite …

Rare Oregon silverspot butterfly caterpillars reintroduced to Saddle Mountain

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications


Woodland Park Zoo is part of a team that released 500 Oregon silverspot butterfly caterpillars last week on the slopes of Saddle Mountain located in Oregon.


More than 200 of the released caterpillars were raised this summer at the zoo’s butterfly conservation lab. The reintroduction to the habitat is part of a collaborative, ongoing effort to stabilize the declining population of Oregon silverspot butterflies.

Other team members joining the caterpillar release were Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Oregon Zoo.

The caterpillars began their journey to the mountain as part of the imperiled species programs at Woodland Park Zoo and Oregon Zoo. Each year, a small number of female Oregon silverspot butterflies are collected from wild populations and brought to zoo conservation labs to lay eggs. The hatched larvae spend the winter asleep in the lab. In the early summer they are woken up and fed early blu…

Jungle Party 2018 hits benchmark thanks to community support

Posted by Meghan Sawyer, Public Relations
Photos by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren, Woodland Park Zoo
More than 1,000 Seattle leaders and philanthropists came together at Woodland Park Zoo’s 42nd Annual Jungle Party fundraising event, giving collectively more than $2 million for the zoo’s pioneering work and conservation mission. 

This year’s Jungle Party, themed “Wander Into the Wild,” was held on July 13 and presented by title sponsors The Boeing Company and Callisons, Inc. Woodland Park Zoo Board members Jim Burgett, Ben Magnano, Matt Rosauer, Ethan Stowell and Evan Wyman co-chaired the event.

“The extraordinary generosity of our Jungle Party patrons this year is humbling, energizing and inspiring,” said Alejandro Grajal, President and CEO of Woodland Park Zoo. “The contributions from our long-term supporters and new friends will directly support local and global wildlife conservation, world-class animal care at our zoo and a considerable increase in access for children and families facing …

Zoo and biologists get turtles ready for release to the wild

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications
Photos by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren/Woodland Park Zoo

On July 12, more than 45 endangered Western pond turtles were weighed, measured and marked for identification in preparation for being released to the wild at protected sites in Washington.
Under the Western Pond Turtle Recovery Project, the turtles were collected from the wild as eggs and given a head start on life under the care of Woodland Park Zoo to improve their chance of survival in the wild.
Unlike wild turtles, they are fed at the zoo throughout the winter so that by summer they are nearly as big as 3-year-old turtles that grew up in the wild.
In 1991, only about 150 Western pond turtles remained in two populations in the state of Washington and the species nearly became extinct. In 1993, the state listed the Western pond turtle as endangered. Today, thanks to collaborative recovery efforts over the last 27 years, more than 1,000 thrive at protected sites.
Over the last several years…