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American Trail News Archive

Jul. 16, 2018
In honor of National Zookeeper Week, the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute is featuring some of the dedicated professionals who go above and beyond for the animals in our... read more
California Sea Lion
Jun. 29, 2018
From whiskers to flippers and a penchant for fish, seals and sea lions have a lot in common. So how can you tell these pinnipeds apart?
Gray Wolf
Mar. 22, 2018
Get the answers to your most internet-searched questions about gray wolves, such as "Why do gray wolves howl at the moon?" Hint: they don't!
A medium-sized black bird, called a common raven, perched on a tree branch
Mar. 07, 2018
In a new study almost 20 years in the making, Smithsonian researchers and partners report some of the strongest evidence yet of the phenomenon of speciation reversal in two lineages of common ravens.
Oct. 13, 2017
For the first time ever, the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute’s Migratory Bird Center has teamed up with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources to track the migration of brown... read more
Oct. 06, 2017
A stroll down American Trail brings visitors face-to-face with swimming sea lions, busy beavers and resourceful ravens. What visitors may not see are the dedicated keepers working hard behind the... read more
Gray seal Birdie explores her habitat on American Trail
Sep. 01, 2017
The youngest members of American Trail’s pinniped family have made quite the splash this summer. In June, sea lion Catalina celebrated her first birthday. Meanwhile, 7-month-old gray seal Birdie is... read more
Two brown pelicans. One sits on a nest and the second spreads its wings.
Jul. 19, 2017
On July 11, Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center scientist Autumn-Lynn Harrison set out to deploy GPS tags on the Chesapeake Bay’s brown pelicans to track their migrations and better understand the ... read more
Rebecca Sturniolo and Gunther
Jun. 02, 2017
How do keepers ensure a gray seal’s teeth are healthy? American Trail animal keeper Diana Vogel is training the Zoo’s 26-year-old male gray seal, Gunther, to voluntarily participate in dental... read more
close up of Squeegee the harbor seal's face and whiskers
Feb. 03, 2017
The Zoo’s 31-year-old male harbor seal, Squeegee, died shortly after a diagnostic medical exam Feb. 1. American Trail keepers had been monitoring Squeegee closely for several weeks after he presented... read more