OPEN 9:30 A.M. TO 6:00 P.M. DAILY Support Your Zoo | About Us | Contact |

<< Return to Press Room


Woodland Park Zoo - Press Release


August 23, 2012


Sneak peek for press of snow leopard cubs August 24 

Gigi Allianic, Caileigh Robertson
206.548.2550 |

Woodland Park Zoo’s Snow Leopard Cubs to make first official public appearance Saturday, August 25, noon – 3:00 p.m.

Photo Credit: Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo


Since their birth in May, Woodland Park Zoo’s two female snow leopard cubs Shanti and Asha have been seen only in photos and videos. Despite generating a large fan base online, zoo visitors have yet to see the cubs on exhibit. The press is invited to a sneak peek of the cubs Friday, August 24, 10:30 a.m.

The newest feline ambassadors will make their first official public appearance Saturday, August 25, noon - 3:00 p.m.

The snow leopard cubs will be viewable to zoo visitors in the snow leopard exhibit located in Australasia. Following August 24, daily viewing hours for the public will continue from noon to 3:00 p.m., and will incrementally increase as the cubs become more comfortable in their new surroundings.

Shanti and Asha were born to 7-year-old mother Helen and 6-year-old father Tom in May. Originally a litter of three, the cubs were all born with eye and eyelid defects, a condition known as coloboma. Shanti and Asha remain blind in the right eye, which is abnormally small in both cubs. The third cub, a male, was euthanized in June due to multiple severe heart defects that were causing early heart failure.

The zoo’s animal management staff has made changes to the snow leopard exhibit to make it visually-impaired cub friendly. Staff trimmed branches at the cubs’ eye level and laid hay to soften rocky surfaces throughout the exhibit.

For latest photos and video of the snow leopard cubs and to follow their story, go to


Sneak peek for the press: Friday, August 24, 10:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Public debut: Saturday, August 25, noon to 3:00 p.m.


Australasia area of Woodland Park Zoo. Enter through West Entrance on Phinney Ave. N. between N. 55th & N. 56th Sts. for staff escort.


Summer hours: 9:30 a.m.-6:00 p.m. daily. Admission through September 30: Adult (13-64) id="mce_marker"7.75; Child (3-12) id="mce_marker"1.50; Toddler (0-2) Free. Active, retired and veteran U.S. military and their families, seniors and people with disabilities receive a discount and zoo members receive free zoo admission year round. Parking: $5.25

For more information or to become a zoo member, visit or call 206.548.2500 or 548.2599 (TTY)


Accredited by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, award-winning Woodland Park Zoo is famed for pioneering naturalistic exhibits and setting international standards for zoos in animal care, conservation and education programs. Woodland Park Zoo is helping to save animals and their habitats in the Pacific Northwest and around the world. By inspiring people to care and act, Woodland Park Zoo is making a difference in our planet’s future. For more information, visit


Woodland Park Zoo saves animals and their habitats through conservation leadership and engaging experiences, inspiring people to learn, care and act.