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Muskox

Did you know?

Ovibos moschatus wardi

Muskoxen have secret weapon against the cold – a two-layer coat. Their soft underwool, called qiviut (“kiv-ee-ute”) is warmer than sheep’s wool and softer than cashmere. They shed it in spring.

Discover Muskoxen

Habitat
Wild and Zoo
Muskoxen have lived in the frozen Arctic for many thousands of years, living on prairies and tundra in Greenland, northern Canada and Alaska. Find them in our Arctic Tundra .
Arctic Tundra
Meet the Keepers
(Double duty.)
Our muskoxen are taken care of by our elephant keepers! You can meet them at the daily elephant Keeper Chats. Or come see a polar bear Keeper Chat just nearby.
See daily schedule

Meet our Muskoxen

Mya
Hudson
Charlotte

Protecting Muskox

Saving a species.

THE THREAT: Muskoxen were hunted for meat and hides in the 19th and 20th centuries, and their populations plummeted.

TAKE ACTION: The Northwest Game Act of 1917 allowed for conservation efforts that helped their recovery, and there are now around 80,000 muskoxen in the wild. Conservation works!

Arctic Stories

Closed but Still Caring

We may be closed due to recent restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus), but our keepers and veterinary team are still at the zoo every day caring for our animals. From enrichments to treats, check-ups to scratch-downs, here’s how we’re #closedbutstillcaring. Click on any image to start the slideshow. Mouse over to see … Continued

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Being Boris

Caring for the World’s Oldest Male Polar Bear  As Boris splashed in the pool, it was as if age didn’t matter. Paw-slamming a brown ball, pushing around a blue trash can and play-wrestling with his younger buddy Blizzard, the 34-year-old polar bear swam and flipped like a youngster. Then he hauled himself out, shook out … Continued

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Animal couples at the zoo

TACOMA, Wash.–Love is in the air at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium! In honor of Valentine’s Day, visitors will have a chance to celebrate the zoo’s animal couples on February 15 and 16. There’s no concrete way to measure an animal’s love but many of the animals at the zoo are coupled up, or longtime … Continued

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Who's Nearby?
Curious about muskoxen? Then look for our polar bears! Keep walking along the Arctic Tundra path until you find them.