Skip to main content

Press releases

Recent Releases

City Nature Challenge2024 City Nature Challenge Breaks Records

May 15: Nearly 900 observers participated in this year’s City Nature Challenge spanning King, Snohomish, and Pierce counties, including Everett, Seattle, Bellevue, Tacoma, Snohomish, and any place in between.

Read the Story | Download PDF

Tropical Reef Aquarium to open June 14

May 7: The Tropical Reef Aquarium will reopen June 14, after extensive restoration and repair of critical animal-care structures, habitats, and life support systems. The aquarium is an oasis of warm-water marine beauty, with vibrant, tropical fish and new shark additions in a refreshed space.

Read the Story | Download PDF

Goat kids

New goat kids arrive at the zoo

April 30: Seven new goat kids arrived at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium in late April and are settling into their new home. You can hear their adorable noises throughout the Kids’ Zone area.

Read the Story | Download PDF

Volunteers use the iNaturalist app to document wildlife in our local parks and greenspaces for City Nature Challenge. Here they are at Swan Creek Park.City Nature Challenge Returns April 26

April 16: How many species can you spot and record? The annual global City Nature Challenge returns April 26-April 29 and asks everyone to become a scientist for an hour, a day, however long they have.

Download PDF


Wild Wonders Outdoor Theater show and Bugs Alive! return May 4-5 

April 10: The animals at the Wild Wonders Outdoor Theater are training for the return of their show, May 4-5. Plus, Bugs Alive! returns the same weekend.

Download PDF


Apply to be A Youth Volunteer Guide at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium

Dec. 5: Applications are now open for high school students to become summer Zoo Guide volunteers at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium.

Read the Story | Download PDF


Tacoma Students Engage with Wildlife on Field Trip to Northwest Trek Wildlife Park

Dec. 4: Lister Elementary students take a field trip to Northwest Trek as part of the Wildlife Champions program.

Read the Story | Download the PDF


New Field Trip Initiative for Tacoma Public Schools Students

Nov. 21: Metro Parks Tacoma is hosting thousands of children from three grades at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, Tacoma Nature Center, and Point Defiance Park.

Read the Story | Download PDF


holiday goat

9 Wildly Fun Holiday Gift Ideas

Nov. 7: For the holidays this year, consider gifting those close to you something wildly fun to experience together at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium or Northwest Trek Wildlife Park.

Read the story | Download PDF


Tahoma the bald eagle

Free Admission for Veterans to Point Defiance Zoo & Northwest Trek

Nov. 2: U.S. military veterans are invited to enjoy Northwest Trek and Point Defiance Zoo for free on Nov. 11.

Download PDF


Celebrate polar bears in November

Oct. 30: We think polar bears are so extraordinary we’ve decided to celebrate them with not one but two public events in November at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium.

Download PDF


Zoolights Tickets on Sale Now

Oct. 24: It’s almost Zoolights time and you can get your timed online tickets now.

Read the Story | Download PDF


Working to Recover Critically Endangered Red Wolves

Oct. 5: The Tacoma zoo has been a national leader in bringing this critically endangered species back from the brink of extinction since the 1970s.

Read the Story | Download PDF


Accreditation Received by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums

Sept. 29: Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium earned kudos and another five years of accreditation from the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) in September.

Read the Story | Download PDF


The Votes Are In: Guests Name Muskox Calf “Willow”

Sept. 26: Meet Willow, a fuzzy, two-week-old muskox calf at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium.

Read the Story | Download PDF


Celebrating Suki: The Queen of the Barn

Sept. 14: Guests are invited to join Suki’s birthday festivities as she celebrates her 59th birthday this weekend, Sept. 22-24.

Read the Story | Download PDF


Point Defiance Zoo, Northwest Trek Win Certificate Of Excellence Award For Anti-Wildlife Trafficking Display

Sept. 20: Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, Northwest Trek Wildlife Park and other local partners recently won the 2023 Certificate of Excellence in Public Service from the Public Relations Society of America Puget Sound chapter for their anti-wildlife trafficking display at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

Read the Story | Download PDF


Vote on muskox calf name

Sept. 14: Voting is now open for our community to choose the name of Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium’s newest baby animal- a female muskox calf.

Read the Story | Download PDF


It’s A Girl! Muskox Calf Born

Sept. 8: Charlotte the muskox gave birth to a female calf Thursday morning at Point Defiance Zoo. The day-old calf appears to be healthy, sticking closely to mom.

Read the Story | Download PDF


Exciting Weekend of Animal Events at Pierce County Zoos

Aug 28: Watch animals feast on their favorite foods at Northwest Trek Wildlife Park and
enjoy icy treats at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium Sept. 2-4

Download PDF


Malia Somerville Named General Curator

Aug 9: Malia Somerville, a lifelong zoologist with a deep understanding and passion for animal wellbeing, is the newly named General Curator for Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium.

Download PDF


Tiger-Kali-catching-meatballsIt’s time to ROAR at World Tiger Weekend

July 24: It’s time to roaaaarrr! Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium is celebrating its three endangered Sumatran tigers at the annual World Tiger Weekend event July 29 and July 30.

Download PDF


Introducing Twin Polar Bear Cubs Astra And Laerke

June 5: Two-year-old sisters to make their public debut June 15 at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium

Read the Story | Download PDF


Hundreds of Local Community Scientists Participated in City Nature Challenge

May 31: More than 1,400 species identified in Seattle-Tacoma metropolitan area.

Read the Story | Download PDF


New Polar Bears Arriving Soon

May 16: Astra and Laerke, who have called the Detroit Zoo home since 2020, will move to Point Defiance Zoo this spring.

Read the Story | Download PDF


shoreline octopus

Learn About Beach Animals During Tacoma Events

May 10: Ever wondered what it’s like to run a finger over the back of a prickly pink sea star?  Find out at a low tide event this summer at Owen Beach and Titlow Beach in Tacoma.

Read the Story | Download PDF


There’s A New Tiger In Town

Jan. 5: An 11-year-old male Sumatran tiger named Sanjiv (pronounced sun-jeev) will make his public debut at the Zoo on Friday, Jan. 6 at 9:30 am.

Read the Story | Download pdf