For more than 110 years, Woodland Park Zoo has served as an urban oasis, gathering generations of people together to enjoy the natural world. In the late 1880s, Guy Phinney, a wealthy sawmill owner, purchased a large tract of forest land about six miles north of downtown Seattle. On December 28, 1899, several years after Phinney’s death, the City of Seattle purchased the estate for $100,000.
The zoo spans 92 acres, 65 of which are developed as exhibits and public spaces. The remainder is devoted to administrative offices, a buffer zone and a neighborhood park.
The zoo manages the largest live animal collection in Washington state, with 1,000 animals, representing more than 300 species plus 68 species of invertebrates. The zoo provides a home for 35 endangered and five threatened animal species. The zoo’s botanical collection includes more than 92,000 plants and trees representing more than 1,000 species.
Woodland Park Zoo saves animals and their habitats through conservation leadership and engaging experiences, inspiring people to learn, care and act.
The zoo is renowned for its naturalistic animal exhibits which incorporate the many elements of nature mimicking the actual habitats of hundreds of animal species around the globe.
The mission focuses on public education about the animals, habitats and ecosystems that are, more than ever, in need of protecting, and the conservation programs that effectively help bring solutions to imperiled wildlife and wild places.