Smithsonian National Zoological Park l Friends of the National Zoo



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What's New at the Zoo?

Find out about recent happenings at the Smithsonian's National Zoo.

We save species. Watch the video!

Learn how the Smithsonian National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute saves species at the Zoo and around the world.

Partners in the Sky
Unlocking the mysteries of animal movement through precision, near real-time tracking can solve major conservation challenges and transform wildlife science worldwide. For the past year scientists at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute have been working with aviation and aerospace leaders, led by Airbus Americas, Inc, to launch the "Partners in the Sky" program using aviation and aerospace technology to create a first-of-its-kind global animal tracking system.
Gray seal pup growing and thriving on American Trail
Gray seal pup is the first born at the Zoo in 23 years
Cheetah Draco euthanized
We are very sad to announce that 8-year-old cheetah Draco was humanely euthanized this morning. As we’ve shared with you, our keepers have worked tirelessly for several months to increase Draco’s appetite and get him to eat on his own. In order to ensure Draco received the nutrients he needed, keepers and Zoo nutritionists placed meat chunks on a modified tool to interest Draco in the food. Often, it took several feeding sessions throughout the day to entice him to eat. Although Draco initially responded well to the staff’s efforts, his appetite never returned to normal. An exploratory surgery Dec. 14 with a consulting veterinary surgeon revealed a constricted, ulcerated area in his gastrointestinal tract, which likely contributed to his poor condition. His declining appetite and increasing health issues severely decreased his quality of life.
Snowy owl treated
Injured when a bus reportedly hit it, the owl was brought to the Zoo for care
Weathering the cold at the Zoo
Just like humans, some animals seem to revel in cold weather and snowfall. The animal care team closely monitors temperatures and weather to ensure the wellbeing of our animals.