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Red Wolf Woods

Back from the brink

Hidden in dappled shade, two bright eyes are looking at you. You stare back. Then their owner ducks and turns, loping easily over fallen logs to settle into the sunshine. Our red wolves aren’t just beautiful – they’re part of an award-winning program that has saved this iconic species from extinction.

Discover the Woods

Meet our keepers.
(Part of the pack.)
Come find out what it's like to care for these beautiful animals, and how our Zoo helped save them from extinction. Our keepers give unscheduled chats daily, so keep a look out!
We have pups!
Adorable, and vital to the species.
Our pups, born May 2019, are now as big as their parents! The 3 males have now been moved to help grow the population at our breeding facility at sister zoo Northwest Trek - look out for the 5 females and mom Charlotte.
Red Wolf Pups
Find it
in the zoo
Inside the covered viewing area you can get a close look at a real wolf skull, pelt and tracking radio collar.
Plan your day

Protecting Red Wolves

Saving a native species.

THE THREAT: By the 1970s, only 14 pure red wolves existed on the planet, due to ceaseless hunting. By the 1980s, those wolves were brought from the wild to a zoo-based breeding program to restore the population.

TAKE ACTION: Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium joined with other zoos and agencies to save the red wolf, breeding and reintroducing them in the wild. There are now about 40 wolves in the wild, and about 261 at zoos in the Species Survival Plan. They still need our protection if they are to survive.

Animal Stories

Rockfish Recompression

Aquarist John Foster cradled the vermilion rockfish gently in two hands, submersed. Anesthetized, it lay still as veterinarian Dr. Kadie Anderson took a quick documentary photo of its eyes, which bulged to each side. Then Foster lowered the fish – now fully awake – into a water-filled container that looked something like sci-fi author Jules … Continued

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Elephant Yoga and Apple Slices

Shannon Smith stands outside on a fall day, calling out encouragement. “Foot!” she requests. Across the yard, her “buddy” of 24 years slowly lifts a leg, then puts it back down. “Good!” exclaims Smith, and offers an apple slice. It’s exercise time at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, and Smith is leading Suki the elderly … Continued

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Cho Cho, Still the Oldest Siamang

How does it feel to be the oldest siamang? Well, for Cho Cho, snuggled up with his companion Dudlee on a crisp fall morning at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, it seemed pretty cozy. This year Cho Cho is celebrating his 54th birthday – which makes him the oldest siamang on record in human care … Continued

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Come meet the cousins
At our sister zoo Northwest Trek you can meet the red wolf's cousin: the gray wolf. Watch the Trek pack in their forested habitat.