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Animal News

Two Asian elephants wading in a pool, surrounded by sand, grass and trees. One elephant sprays water from its trunk.
Aug. 04, 2017
For Asian elephant keepers, working among the giants of the animal kingdom entails training, enriching and caring for the Zoo's multi-generational herd, as well as contributing to research and...
Mei Xiang
Aug. 04, 2017
Behavior can tell the giant panda team quite a bit about the pandas, but the behaviors they exhibit are only half the story. When it comes to predicting when Mei Xiang will give birth, or when she is...
Asian elephant Kamala explores her habitat.
Aug. 04, 2017
Ever since 42-year-old Asian elephant Kamala arrived at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo in May 2014, keeper Amanda Bobyack has helped her settle into her habitat. Part of that adjustment included...
Jul. 27, 2017
As the world prepares to celebrate Global Tiger Day this Saturday, July 29, Great Cats keepers have some big news to share about the 2-week-old Sumatran tiger cub in their care: it appears to be a...
North Island Brown Kiwi on a table
Jul. 27, 2017
See the beginning of a kiwi egg hatching in this behind-the-scenes Facebook Live at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute!
Bei Bei eating a frozen fruitsicle
Jul. 21, 2017
Activity at the giant panda habitat has slowed since the flurry of breeding season in May. Keepers, Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute scientists and veterinarians were monitoring Mei Xiang...
Batang holding Redd at Think Tank.
Jun. 30, 2017
Bornean orangutan infant Redd is 9 months old! Although he still sticks close to mom, Batang, and she keeps a watchful eye on him, he is very active and seems to enjoy exploring his surroundings.
Bourret's Box Turtle Hatchlings
Jun. 30, 2017
Shell-ebration is in order for the Reptile Discovery Center, where two critically endangered Bourret’s box turtles hatched for the first time in the Smithsonian’s National Zoo’s history. This...
Red Panda
Jun. 30, 2017
Training sloth bears, making an otter puzzle feeder and researching red pandas by studying their poop is all in a day's work for an Asia Trail keeper. 
Cuban crocodile nesting
Jun. 16, 2017
It's nesting season. In April, the Reptile Discovery Center's Cuban crocodile Blanche built up a large mound nest. She constructed the nest by kicking up the mulch in the exhibit into a central...
seal swimming with one front and one back flipper exposed
Jun. 14, 2017
With temperatures soaring, the Smithsonian’s National Zoo continues to take good care of its creatures—human and non-human alike! Here’s what keepers do for the animals in this heat.
Warthog in South Africa
Jun. 02, 2017
In April, the Smithsonian’s National Zoo’s chief veterinarian joined colleagues in South Africa to investigate an ancient disease that has the potential to collapse the entire ecosystem: bovine...
A Day in the Life of a Reptile Discovery Center Keeper
Jun. 02, 2017
Venture into the Reptile Discovery Center and find more than 70 species, including crocodilians, snakes, lizards, turtles, frogs and salamanders. Follow keepers Kyle Miller and Matt Neff as they...
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...
May. 26, 2017
The Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute’s team of reproductive scientists, veterinarians and panda keepers performed two artificial inseminations on female giant panda Mei...
Giant panda Mei Xiang walking in the grass. There is a large rock to the right in the foreground.
May. 23, 2017
Mei Xiang, the Zoo’s 18-year-old female giant panda, is showing behavioral and physical signs of estrus.
Bei Bei
May. 18, 2017
Bei Bei is a bit of a daredevil. Although eating and sleeping are still his favorite pastimes, the giant panda cub also loves to climb trees. Lately, he has been climbing trees in his yard and...
King Vulture
May. 05, 2017
Learn a few fun facts about these beautiful birds, and see them in person during your next visit to the Zoo's Bird House outdoor exhibit!
Ring-Tailed Lemurs
May. 05, 2017
Go behind the scenes with animal keepers Emily Bricker, Melba Brown and Alexandra Reddy as they care for some of the most endangered primates in the world.
Veterinarians x-ray Rose.
Apr. 28, 2017
In March, female Cuban crocodile Rose underwent a series of tests to determine if she is still capable of producing healthy eggs. It all began with an egg — a perfectly smooth, white, oval-shaped,...
cheetah cub with its mouth open being held in a gloved hand
Apr. 25, 2017
Last week, the public was invited to help name five of the 10 cheetah cubs born in late March at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) in Front Royal, Virginia. The cheetah cubs have...
Apr. 22, 2017
First come cubs, then comes species recovery. Find out how a thriving population in human care benefits wild cheetahs.
Asian elephant
Apr. 22, 2017
WATCH: The Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute's care and study of Asian elephants has a positive impact on the species.
cheetah cub with its mouth open being held in a gloved hand
Apr. 20, 2017
The public is invited to help name five of the 10 cheetah cubs born in late March at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) in Front Royal, Virginia.
Saving Frogs with Science
Apr. 12, 2017
Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute scientists are saving frogs with science. Release trials in the wild begin spring 2017. On Earth Day weekend, the Smithsonian is convening the Earth...