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Rocky Shores

Splash Around

Wiggle with a walrus, spin like a seal. At Rocky Shores you can explore a far Northwest world where land and ocean meet; where seabirds nest, seals and sea lions dive, walruses splash and otters play.

Discover Rocky Shores

Meet our Keepers
Getting wet is part of the job.
Did you know that walruses sleep all piled up like puppies? That seals can waddle on land as well as swim? Get the scoop from behind the scenes at the daily Keeper Chat at 3pm, or the puffin feed at 12pm.
See schedule
Find it
in the zoo
Head downhill from the central plaza and veer left at the Pacific Seas Aquarium to find the winding path to Rocky Shores. Make sure you explore both the underwater and above-water viewing spaces!
Plan your day

Meet Our Animals

Pacific walrus
California sea lion
Sea otter
Harbor seal
Puffins
Penguin
Otterly playful
Anything will do.
Sekiu loves any kind of plaything. Libby's favorite is a rectangular item from a kid's playhouse.
But both of them love the large purple boomer ball - or just snuggling with each other.
Preening with penguins
All in a day's work.
On a sunny day staff biologist Amanda Shaffer sat in the penguin habitat with a penguin gently pecking her.
While Shaffer scratched the penguin's back, the penguin preened her in return, enjoying the company while other penguins were sitting on eggs.

Protecting Marine Animals

Don't mess with our ocean.

THE THREAT: All marine animals and birds are at risk from ocean threats. Plastic trash chokes and starves; oil spills kill; and overfishing and climate change reduce food.

TAKE ACTION: We can all help protect our oceans by reducing our use of plastic. Bring a reusable water bottle to the Zoo. Skip the straw. Pack lunch sustainably. And tell your friends.

Shore Stories

Penguin chicks hatch on video

CHICK UPDATE: Our penguin chicks have gone behind the scenes to grow bigger and learn to swim. They’ll be back out in a few weeks when they’ve lost their downy feathers, ready to demonstrate their expert swimming skills.   Peck. Peck. Peck. A tiny beak hammers away from the inside of an egg shell, cracks … Continued

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Sculpting Sand Species

Q: Where in the world would you find an elephant, a sea turtle and an axolotl all together? A: In Species in the Sand, the new sand sculpture this summer at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium! Beginning mid-May, our sculpting team led by Tacoma native Sue McGrew will return to create another incredible sculpture – … Continued

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Moea the sea otter arrives

She’s calm and confident– and loves her breakfast. Moea (pronounced “Mia”) is the newest sea otter at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, and she’s already settling into life at the Rocky Shores habitat with our other otters Libby and Sekiu. She’ll make her official debut with them Jan. 5 and 6, with special sea otter … Continued

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Keeper for a Day
Want to find out what our keepers do behind-the-scenes? Become a Keeper for a Day or Marine Biologist for a Day! Unique experiences for teens and adults – book yours now.