SEATTLE—Woodland Park Zoo is giving animal lovers near and far a glimpse into the lives of various species living at the zoo with a new, live animal cam. The webcam will travel around the zoo in the coming months to capture the daily activity of baby animals, behind-the-scenes dens, new species and more. First to be featured is a behind-the-scenes view of the zoo’s baby Matschie’s tree kangaroo, known as a joey, visible through the live 24/7 webcam at zoo.org/animalcam.
The newly-launched animal cam currently allows the public to view one of the zoo’s newborns that zoo visitors may otherwise never see on exhibit! Born the size of a lima bean in June 2012, the tree kangaroo joey is just starting to emerge from its mother’s pouch. The sex of the joey has not yet been determined. The pair is currently living in an off-view maternity den where mother, Elanna, and her young joey continue to bond in a quiet, controlled setting. Tune in to the live animal cam to catch a glimpse of the tree ‘roos receiving some quality TLC! Tree kangaroos are crepuscular, which means they are most active in the morning and at dusk. The cam is equipped with night vision, so viewers can check in on the pair at any time.
“The live animal cam opens a window to the wonders of an incredible, endangered species,” said Dr. Lisa Dabek, the zoo’s Tree Kangaroo Conservation Program Director (TKCP) and Senior Conservation Scientist. “We hope that it will not only attract local viewers who want to keep up with the tree kangaroos in between zoo visits, but also viewers across the globe, many of whom may not otherwise have the opportunity to connect with such unique wildlife ambassadors.”
This rare tree ‘roo birth is part of the Species Survival Plan cooperative breeding program for this endangered species and also represents one of the zoo’s flagship conservation programs, TKCP. Under the leadership of Dabek, TKCP fosters wildlife and habitat conservation and local community livelihoods in Papua New Guinea (PNG)—home to the endangered Matschie's tree kangaroo—working with local communities to save the animal and the forest resources they share.
TKCP worked with local landowners to help develop Papua New Guinea's first ever Conservation Area, officially recognized by the national government in 2009. Landowners pledged more than 180,000 acres of their own land to create the protected area for tree kangaroos, rain forest habitat and endemic species of PNG's Huon Peninsula. By uniting PNG landowners, government officials, and conservation partners, TKCP has created a community of conservation advocates to address long-term management for the Conservation Area and improvement opportunities to better the livelihood of the surrounding communities.
While there are currently no plans for the new family to go on public exhibit, adult tree kangaroos may be seen in the zoo’s Day Exhibit.
Stay tuned in to zoo.org/animalcam to see what Woodland Park Zoo animal will be featured next on the roving webcam. The animal cam will travel around the zoo to feature new babies, behind-the-scenes happenings and cool new angles on the exhibits zoo visitors know and love.