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FONZ Names Lynn Mento as New Executive Director

July 1, 2015

The Board of Directors of Friends of the National Zoo (FONZ) is pleased to announce that Lynn Mento has been named Executive Director.

Clouded Leopards Born in Thailand Via Artificial Insemination

June 15, 2015

For only the second time, a litter of clouded leopard cubs has been born as the result of an artificial insemination. Pierre Comizzoli, reproductive physiologist at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI), performed the artificial insemination in Thailand last March alongside Paweena Thuwanut, a former JoGayle Howard Postdoctoral Fellow at SCBI, and Wanlaya Tipkantha, a doctoral candidate at Chulalongkorn University, who also studied at SCBI. The two cubs were born at the Khao Khew Open Zoo in Chonburi, Thailand June 9.

Loggerhead Shrike Chicks Hatch at Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute

June 11, 2015

Ten loggerhead shrikes hatched last month at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) in Front Royal, Va. These genetically valuable chicks will be the first SCBI-hatched shrikes to be released into the wild.

Miniaturized GPS Tags Allow Tracking of Small Breeding Songbirds to Tropical Winter Territories for First Time

June 10, 2015

For the first time, researchers at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute’s Migratory Bird Center have tracked small migratory ovenbirds (Seiurus aurocapilla) to their tropical wintering grounds with unparalleled accuracy, which significantly improves the understanding of migratory connectivity. Understanding migratory connectivity is key to future conservation efforts.

Photo Release: Critically Endangered Spider Tortoise Hatches at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo

May 22, 2015

Tomorrow is World Turtle day. The Smithsonian’s National Zoo is celebrating a conservation milestone; for the first time, a rare spider tortoise has hatched in the Reptile Discovery Center.

Photo Release: Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Scientists Find Andean Bears Using Camera Traps In Peru

May 8, 2015

For the first time, a team from the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute’s (SCBI) Center for Conservation Education and Sustainability collected photo evidence of an Andean bear (also known as the spectacled bear) in Peru’s Amarakaeri Comunal Reserve using camera traps—automated cameras with motion sensors.

Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Scientists Find Forest Corridors Are Key to Maintaining Healthy Sloth Bear Populations

May 6, 2015

By using DNA extracted from sloth bear scat, a team of Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) researchers found that forest corridors between protected areas in the bears’ native habitats are vital to maintaining a genetically diverse population.

Media Advisory: Smithsonian’s National Zoo Celebrates International Migratory Bird Day with Family Events May 7 and 9

May 4, 2015

In honor of International Migratory Bird Day, the Smithsonian’s National Zoo is hosting two free events where Zoo visitors can learn about birds and ways to support bird conservation efforts. These events, collectively known as Bird Fest 2015, celebrate the springtime return of millions of birds that winter in Latin America and the Caribbean. The theme of this year’s event is “Restore Habitats, Restore Birds.”

Smithsonian’s National Zoo Opens Mobile Wildlife Trafficking Educational Kiosk

April 29, 2015

A free-standing kiosk at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo enables visitors to gain a better understanding of the impact of wildlife trafficking.

SCBI Researchers Use Frozen Testes Tissue To Generate Sperm

April 29, 2015

Researchers at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) have generated mature sperm from frozen testicular tissue for the first time. Their findings were published in PLOS ONE today. The technique, called xenografting, has been successful in several domestic species but has never been done with frozen tissue before.

Giant Anteater Update

February 12, 2015

Giant anteater Maripi gave birth to a female pup the night of January 24. Keepers monitored both Maripi and her pup via a closed circuit camera. Within 48 hours keepers became concerned that the pup was not thriving.

Smithsonian's National Zoo Security Update and Planning: Statement from the Director

January 23, 2015

The Smithsonian's National Zoo's attendance varies greatly throughout the year varying from a few hundred visitors per day in January to more than 25,000 visitors per day in April. To safely and securely handle the crowds, the Zoo implements temporary access control during high traffic times.