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Northwest Trek News
Jul 02, 2019

“The reason I love it here is because we care for native wildlife. If you go hiking in the Northwest, you’ll never see a lion or zebra, but you might see elk or black bear. Teaching people how to live conflict-free with wildlife – that’s what’s so cool about this job.” – Haley Withers, carnivore keeper, Northwest Trek 10:30am Haley Withers is hot and sweaty. She’s been whacking weeds in the wolf habitat for two and a half hours, and now it’s time to clean out grizzly bear dens. “We wear many hats,” she says with a small smile, of …

Jun 28, 2019

Forget the ugly duckling. These cygnets are only a week old, and already beautiful. But the six baby swans, which hatched early June at Northwest Trek, aren’t just pint-sized bundles of fluffy gray cuteness. They’re part of a success story for trumpeter swans in North America, helping the species flourish in the wild. “This year we had six cygnets, which is more than we’ve had in years,” said curator Marc Heinzman. “It’s great to see such a healthy population here.” Paired for life, breeding for the future The new cygnets were hatched to the wildlife park’s breeding pair of swans, …

Jun 18, 2019

For Northwest Trek guests, the Keeper Adventure Tour through the Free-Roaming Area is a mix of off-road thrills and up-close animals. But for keeper Deanna Edwards, it’s a way to share a passion for wildlife – combined with friendliness, unflagging animal care and some serious driving skills. “I’m always doing new things, like this track here,” she says, gunning the tour jeep up a muddy track into a perfect three-point-turn. “That’s one of the great things about the Free-Roaming Area. I’m also in keeper mode, playing Where’s Waldo with the animals and making sure they’re all okay. But what I …

Jun 17, 2019

It’s a cool, wet spring morning at Northwest Trek, and keeper Wendi Mello is cleaning out the fisher habitat. She scoops some poop, then bends down intently. “Aha!” she exclaims, and reaches out a gloved hand. It’s a banana slug, long, mottled and yellow – and Mello scoops it up in all its slimy glory. Slug Fest is coming, and Northwest Trek is getting ready. Slug Hunting “Fifty to sixty degrees and raining, that’s prime slug hunting time,” explains Mello. One of the Wetlands keepers, she’s the lead for collecting banana slugs for the ever-popular Tank o’ Slugs at the …

Jun 07, 2019

You could call them the “bear” necessities. Healthy teeth are pretty important when you’re a 423-pound black bear that eats seven pounds of food every day. So when Northwest Trek Wildlife Park veterinarian Dr. Allison Case saw that Benton, one of the park’s two black bears, had a fracture in an upper canine, she decided it was time for a root canal. Just a little bare “During his regular physical check-up last month, I had the opportunity to closely examine his upper left canine and the root exposure,” Case said. “It’s a significant tooth, and we want to protect it …

Jun 05, 2019

Dads deserve to get a bit wild every so often – and Northwest Trek is the perfect place to do it! Bring Dad out to see our bison, moose, mountain goat kids and grizzly cubs, and buy him a gift he’ll never forget. Keeper Adventure Tour Hop into the Jeep with one of our keepers and get off-road in the Free-Roaming Area to see bison, elk, mountain goats and more – all close enough to sniff! Hear stories, watch what our keepers do and take the best moose selfies ever. Tours run 10:30am and 1pm daily through Sept. 1.   …

May 29, 2019

Soar like an eagle on a zip line Our bald eagles are coming this summer to Eagle Passage, and you can swoop with the same grace and speed (well, almost) on one of our five exhilarating zip line course, from Super Kid (ages 5 and up) through Sensation (ages 18+). Book here.   Build like a beaver at Kids’ Trek Beavers are nature’s engineers, reshaping their environment to build dams and lodges. Build a fort of branches in our Kids’ Trek playground and test out your engineering skills! Then come visit our beavers in the Forest+Wetland habitat, resting, swimming or …

May 13, 2019

It’s not for the faint of heart. You have to talk to strangers, spend hours outside or even wade through cold ponds. But volunteering at Northwest Trek is infinitely rewarding – for yourself and for the planet. Richard Richard Nichols is standing beside a cart on the Bear Bridge. He’s been a volunteer at Northwest Trek for a year, and he knows exactly what to say when a family wanders along, the father looking around uncertainly. “Tram?” says Nichols, succinctly. The father nods. Nichols points down to the Discovery Tram Tour station. “That way, sir. Keep going and you’ll find …

May 13, 2019

As pink sky slowly darkens behind tall trees, six scientists stand motionless outside the veterinary clinic at Northwest Trek. Only a robin’s chirp pierces the cool air. All eyes are fixed on the clinic’s overhang roof, straining to see through the shadows. They’re waiting for the appearance of a tiny creature that’s often misunderstood, yet is vital to human health, and is now in danger from a deadly disease. They’re waiting for bats. 6:00 p.m. Scientists Michelle Tirhi and Abby Tobin arrive at Northwest Trek, and start scouting bat roosts with Trek staff: conservation engagement coordinator Rachael Mueller, veterinary technician …

May 06, 2019

Spring means baby animals – and ours are here! In the Free-Roaming Area, take a Discovery Tram Tour and keep a lookout for fuzzy orange bison calves or tiny white bighorn lambs hidden in the ferns. Stay tuned for more animals as they are born! And don’t forget our other young animals. Grizzly cubs Hawthorne and Huckleberry are nearly 18 months old now, and growing up fast.: digging, swimming, climbing. Our mountain goat kids are nearly one year old and still roam in a big, fluffy white pack in the Free-Roaming Area. Happy spring! (Click on a photo to open …