Governor Jay Inslee announced yesterday that events and public gatherings of 250 people or more shall be canceled/closed to help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. King County Executive Dow Constantine announced that social and recreational gatherings smaller than 250 should also be canceled, with exception to those that can meet certain virus mitigation protocol.
Following the lead and directive of state health and government officials, Woodland Park Zoo is temporarily closing to the public, effective today, Thursday, March 12.
The zoo will tentatively remain closed through March 31, 2020, and will provide updates if that date changes based on guidance from local and state authorities.
Last week, the zoo announced programming and staffing decisions, and many employees were asked to begin working from home. The zoo remained open while select indoor, high-traffic areas were closed. With the governor’s directive today, the zoo will close all public operations.
Critical operations staff, including animal care teams and other selected employees, will continue working at the zoo to provide vital care to the zoo’s animals and infrastructure. All other employees will work from home if they are able or receive paid leave or if their job cannot be conducted remotely.
Woodland Park Zoo plans ahead for the animals in its care. The zoo currently has a surplus of essential food and medical supplies for its animals and will prepare contingencies and proactively monitor the supply chain to assure essentials remain on hand through the coming months. For updates, visit www.zoo.org/visit.