Smithsonian Study Reveals Precipitous Decline of Genetic Diversity in Wild Cheetahs
June 21, 2016
The planet's last stronghold of wild cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) is losing genetic diversity at an alarming rate according to a new study from the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) and partners published June 21 in the journal Biological Conservation. This is in direct contrast with the population of cheetahs in zoos, which is as genetically diverse as it was 30 years ago because of cooperative and strategically managed breeding programs, including the Association of Zoos and Aquariums' Cheetah Species Survival Plan.
Japanese Giant Salamander Dies at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo
June 8, 2016
A Japanese giant salamander at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo died June 6. Keepers had noticed May 25 that the 25-year-old female had been lethargic and was having difficulty maintaining buoyancy, which prompted keepers to notify the Zoo’s veterinarians. Despite treatment with antifungal and antibacterial medicines, the salamander’s condition did not improve, and veterinarians elected to humanely euthanize her.
Endangered Kiwi Chick Hatched at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
May 31, 2016
For the first time, an egg laid by a female brown kiwi at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) in Front Royal, Va., hatched May 10. The chick is the first for parents Ngati Hine Rua (female) and Ngati Hine Tahi (male). SCBI has previously hatched eggs originally laid at other zoos. Keepers will not know the sex of the chick for several weeks.