Category Archives: Zoo

Seattle’s snow leopard kittens have grown up and are leaving home

The Woodland Park Zoo has just announced that our two-year-old snow leopard twins are leaving Seattle. Gobi (the male) is moving next week to Rolling Hills Wildlife Adventure in Salina, Kansas, and Batu (the female) will be moving in a few months to Assiniboine Zoo in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. So this is the last weekend to see the two cats together. {Sniffle}

Here’s what they looked like when they were young:

And here they are all grown up:

Well, at least I’ll be able to visit Evita, the new ocelot kitten, when she makes here public debut in late April:

I’m still here

Sorry for the blog silence, but my attention was elsewhere.

The good news is that Matt has finished writing his new novel, The Mirage, which will likely be published in January 2012. (More details to come.) One of the perks of being married to an author is that I’m his first reader, and I can’t begin to describe the remarkable experience of reading manuscript pages and watching a master storyteller work his magic. As an added bonus, I enjoy assisting him with research, fact-checking, and editing. (But it’s not all fun– helping my obsessive and perfectionist husband get over the finish line and let go of the book is grueling.) I don’t want to tease you, but let me just say this book is his best yet– it’s mind-blowingly great and unlike anything I’ve ever read, yet still clearly a Matt Ruff book.

To help make amends for my absence, here are two photos of the ocelot kitten born in January at Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo:

Can this really be February in Seattle?

Yesterday Matt and I took a long walk in the sunshine, and I took a few photographs along the way to document the extraordinary weather we’ve been having.

The incredibly blue sky, with the snow-capped Olympic Mountains in the distance:

Believe it or not, the cherry trees are in full bloom:

More spring flowers in February:

Then we went to the Woodland Park Zoo to say our final goodbyes to the nocturnal animals, but of course we had to spend some time with our favorite big cats, who seemed to be enjoying the sunshine as much as we were.

The tiger:

The jaguar:

An ocelot high in a tree:

Three very sleepy snow leopards, the mom and her two 8-month old cubs:

We also visited the budgies and small parrots at Willawong Station and fed them seed sticks:

An orchid from the Tropical Rain Forest exhibit:

The weather is supposed to stay sunny, warm, and dry through Monday, so I’m sure we’re not the only Seattleites with spring fever.

Say goodbye to Seattle’s slow loris, bush babies, and other nocturnal animals

Due to budget cuts, Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo is permanently closing its Night Exhibit of nocturnal animals at the end of February.

A few of the animals will stay at the zoo and be moved to different exhibits. The pygmy lorises and a slow loris will stay but will not be on public view. Unfortunately, the rest of the animals will be relocated to other zoos.

Here’s the zoo’s announcement and their FAQ about the closure of the exhibit, including information on which animals will be staying or going.

Matt and I visited the Night Exhibit last week, and we will especially miss the slow loris and the galagos (bush babies).

slow loris

Here’s video of the twin galagos born at the Woodland Park Zoo in October 2008:

Resistance is futile…

ZooBorns has posted a series of beautiful photos of a baby Amur Leopard cub born a month ago at Germany’s Serengeti Park.  Here’s the first one, and click the photo to see the others:

Amur Leopards are critically endangered, with less than 40 left in the wild (in the Russian Far East) and about 300 in zoo breeding programs. There’s more information and photos on the ALTA Amur Leopard Conservation website and World Wildlife Fund’s Amur Leopard page.

Seattle’s snow leopard kittens will make their debut on August 15th

The two snow leopard kittens born on Memorial Day at Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo will make their public debut August 15th on International Snow Leopard Day. For those who can’t be there, here’s the cover of the zoo’s magazine, which came in the mail a couple of days ago:

snow leopard cover

The zoo occasionally posts photos of them on its blog and videos on its YouTube channel. The most recent video was of their medical exam at six weeks:

It looks like there’s been a snow leopard baby boom this summer– the ZooBorns site has photos of the twins born at the Toronto Zoo and the single cubs born at Utah’s Hogle Zoo and Tierpark Berlin.

UPDATE: On August 20th the zoo blog posted a new video of the snow leopards exploring their exhibit:

Snow leopard kittens born in Seattle

Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo has posted photos on their blog of the two snow leopards that were born on Memorial Day:

snow leopard 1

snow leopard 2

The snow leopard kittens aren’t yet on public display, but you can visit the zoo’s other beautiful cats, including the ocelot kittens that were born in October:

Ocelot kittens at 5 weeks

Ocelot kittens at 5 weeks

Ocelot kittens at five months

Ocelot kittens at almost 5 months

For more photos of cute baby zoo animals from around the world, check out the ZooBorns website.

Update 1: The zoo blog has posted the first video of the snow leopard kittens.

Update 2: See my follow-up blog post on the snow leopards for news and more videos (at about six weeks and ten weeks old).