News Blog for Seattle's Wallingford Neighborhood


Zoo news: flamingos die, no Pumpkin Prowl, more

October 22nd, 2010 by master

There’s been quite a lot of news at the Woodland Park Zoo in recent days. Here are some stories from our sister site PhinneyWood:

Adult flamingo and two chicks die at zoo

The Woodland Park Zoo reports that one of its adult flamingos and two newborn flamingo chicks have died. The chicks hatched on Oct. 3 and 9.

From the zoo’s press release:

The older of the chicks was found dead this morning in the exhibit, and the younger of the chicks was discovered missing Sunday night.

Both parents of flamingos are involved in rearing their young, and this year’s chicks were being raised under the care of their parents, not by the zoo staff. The younger chick was left in a vulnerable position under the sole care of its mother following the unexpected death of her mate last Friday. A necropsy revealed that this adult bird died of a fractured vertebra and internal health issues. The cause of the injury has not been determined.

The older chick was thriving under the care of its attentive parents and was showing increased signs of mobility and natural flamingo behavior. It is not known what led to its death.

One of the flamingo chicks eating last week. Photo by Dennis Dow, Woodland Park Zoo.

Three flamingo eggs remain in nests at the exhibit, and are expected to hatch soon.

Zoo’s Pumpkin Bash bigger and better in wake of Pumpkin Prowl cancellation

The Woodland Park Zoo’s annual Pumpkin Bash is set for Oct. 30-31, with special treats for the animals, live entertainment and daytime trick-or-treating. But the annual three-day, nighttime Pumpkin Prowl has been canceled because it didn’t raise enough money to cover costs.

According to the zoo, some of the Pumpkin Prowl activities, such as the trick-or-treating, are being rolled into the Pumpkin Bash.

Pumpkin Bash features: a repertoire of animal behavior as hippos, bears, elephants, birds, and other animals crunch, smash or stomp on the orange gourds; trick or treating in the zoo’s West Plaza; “Thriller” dance performances by Roosevelt High School (Sunday only); demonstrations by Alpha Martial Arts (Saturday only); imaginative and fun presentations by Killer Science; face painting (additional fee); up-close animal encounters; meet ‘n’ greets with the zoo’s penguin and meerkat mascots; programs in Zoomazium’s indoor nature play space; and discovery stations to explore animal life.

Photo by Lori Veres, Woodland Park Zoo.

Pumpkin Bash is from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 30, and Sunday, Oct. 31. Click here for a full schedule of when each animal gets their Halloween treats. Pumpkin Bash is included in zoo admission. Special discount for this event: one child 12 and under in costume is admitted free with a paid adult. Bring your own trick-or-treat bags. The zoo’s current winter hours are 9:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. daily.

Help design sensory garden at the zoo

The Sensory Garden Advisory Committee is holding a meeting on Saturday to start developing a sensory garden next to the Woodland Park Zoo. A sensory garden is a broad term for an area that can be therapeutic for the deaf, blind or those with autism. For example, it may have flowers with strong scents, highly textured plants, a rain garden or a reflexology path.

The meeting is from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturday at the Norse Home, 5311 Phinney Ave. N. Read the full story.

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Vote for meerkats' names, win prizes

June 2nd, 2010 by master

Woodland Park Zoo is holding a contest to name the eight members of its new meerkat mob.

Photo by Ryan Hawk, Woodland Park Zoo.

The zoo has selected 16 names that reflect the meerkats’ native southern African habitat. Voting is open from through June 15. The eight highest vote getters will become the new names for the four male and four female meerkats.

  • Kalahari (African desert)
  • Kgala (“great thirst” in Tswana)
  • Acacia (African tree)
  • Kiwano (Kalahari fruit)
  • Nossob (southern African river)
  • Baobob (African plains tree)
  • Aranos (Namibian town)
  • Molopo (southern African river)
  • Gochas (Namibian settlement)
  • Ghanzi (town in Botswana)
  • Zimba (Zambian town)
  • Erongo (Namibian mountain)
  • Dinawa (“beans” in Tswana)
  • Nata (southern African river)
  • Kuruman (southern African river)
  • Ngami (lake in Botswana)

The poll is open to all ages, but if you’re under 18 you’ll need parental/guardian approval. Ballots are available at participating U.S. Bank locations across the Puget Sound region, in June 1-15 issues of The Seattle Times, on zoo grounds during business hours, and for download on the zoo’s website.

For complete rules, a list of participating U.S. Bank locations or to download a ballot, visit

Voters will be entered to win a grand prize or one of two runner-up prizes: 1.) Grand prize (one winner): A 3-day, 2-night trip for four (4) to San Diego including airfare, hotel accommodations at the San Diego Marriott Mission Valley, and tickets to local attractions including San Diego Zoo and Sea World; 2.) Runners up (two winners): $75 Woodland Park Zoo gift card and ZooParent meerkat adoption. The three winners will be drawn at random from all eligible entries.

The eight most voted meerkat names and the three prize winners will be announced on July 1 at Red, White & Zoo when meerkats will enjoy a special watermelon treat as part of our annual Independence Day-themed enrichment event.

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