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Animal News

giant panda bei bei eating bamboo
Feb. 16, 2018
Giant panda Bei Bei celebrated the Lunar New Year with some special Year of the Dog enrichment! 
Animal keepers Melba Brown (foreground) and Amanda Bania (background) train western lowland gorilla Calaya for ultrasounds.
Feb. 16, 2018
Primate keeper Melba Brown trained the Zoo’s pregnant western lowland gorilla, Calaya, to participate in ultrasounds. 
panda in snow
Feb. 09, 2018
Congrats and best wishes from our wild and furry team to Team USA at the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea!
Western Lowland Gorilla Calaya
Feb. 09, 2018
When it comes to caring for babies at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo, it takes a village. For western lowland gorilla Calaya, her village of support is the great ape animal care team and her primary...
Red pandas
Feb. 02, 2018
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, two animals that are red and white and beloved by everyone made their debut on Asia Trail! Meet Nutmeg and her son, Jackie, who came to the Zoo from the Smithsonian...
Batang and Redd on the O-Line
Feb. 01, 2018
At 16 months old, Bornean orangutan infant Redd is growing stronger and more independent every day. Read all about Redd’s progress and favorite activities in the latest Q&A with animal keeper...
Calaya gathers Timothy hay and wood wool for her nest.
Jan. 26, 2018
Everyone likes to have a cozy place to sleep. Western lowland gorillas, however, rarely sleep in the same bed twice.
African lion Luke rubs his head against a tree with scent enrichment
Jan. 05, 2018
Enriching toys, environments, foods and experiences abound at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo. Learn how animal care staff encourage the Zoo’s residents to use their natural behaviors.
Amur tiger
Jan. 05, 2018
There’s a new tiger in town! Meet Pavel, a 10-year-old Amur tiger who lives at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo’s Great Cats habitat. He made his debut this week and is the first of his endangered...
A keeper holding a red ball with hay for enrichment and a maned wolf
Jan. 05, 2018
Get a glimpse at a day in the life of Cheetah Conservation Station keepers who work with dama gazelles, cheetahs and maned wolves.
Jan. 04, 2018
For the first time since 1948, the Great Cats habitat at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo is once again home to an Amur tiger, a 10-year-old male named Pavel.
Dec. 22, 2017
There is a brand new band of brothers at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo. A coalition of two male cheetahs made their debut at the Cheetah Conservation Station yesterday, Dec. 21.
Mei Xiang in the snow.
Dec. 19, 2017
As the days get shorter and the weather gets cooler, the pandas are spending more time in their yards.  Panda keepers sometimes get asked by the visitors why we place the bamboo and enrichment items...
Western Lowland Gorilla Calaya
Dec. 18, 2017
Western lowland gorilla Calaya recently entered her second trimester of pregnancy. Just like other members of the great ape family—including humans—gorillas experience weight gain, and some...
Day in the Life of a Bird House Keeper
Dec. 01, 2017
Caring for many species—from the itty bitty indigo bunting to the giant greater rhea—is all in a day’s work for keepers behind the scenes at the Zoo's Bird House.
Quito at the Zoo Duisburg in Germany
Dec. 01, 2017
Next week, 4-year-old male Andean bear Quito will make his debut at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo! Get the scoop on the new guy in town from animal keeper Sara Colandrea and assistant curator Leigh...
Western Lowland Gorilla Calaya
Dec. 01, 2017
When western lowland gorilla Calaya first arrived at the Zoo, she was unfamiliar with many husbandry behaviors. Then, one Day, animal keeper Melba Brown had an 'aha' moment. She noticed that Calaya...
Bei Bei
Nov. 29, 2017
Bei Bei started showing signs of abdominal discomfort overnight Saturday, Nov. 25. As a result, the panda team began monitoring him closely. He passed a mucous stool on Sunday, Nov. 26, and began...
Western Lowland Gorilla Calaya
Nov. 24, 2017
Excitement abounds at the Great Ape House as animal keepers prepare western lowland gorilla Calaya for motherhood. Even before she arrived at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo in 2015, the Association...
Przewalski's horse colt Zygmund
Nov. 22, 2017
The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute's Przewalksi's horse colt Zygmund (or “Ziggy” as keepers affectionately refer to him) is growing into a powerful stallion. 
Tian Tian receiving a full veterinary exam.
Nov. 15, 2017
Tian Tian had a preventative health exam yesterday. He was taken to the veterinary hospital, which allowed our veterinarians to get an up-close and in-depth look at him while he was under anesthesia.
Norway rat at Think Tank.
Nov. 03, 2017
Picture an intelligent mammal. One whose smarts are not only key to their survival but also, in certain situations, to that of humans. The Norway rat may not come first to mind, but its ability to...
Small Mammal House keepers clean the lemur exhibit.
Nov. 03, 2017
Some of the Zoo’s most marvelous mammals are also the smallest—from alluring armadillos to endearing naked mole-rats. More than 35 species are on the move at the Small Mammal House, and it takes a...
Nov. 01, 2017
The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia, and the Embassy of New Zealand in the United States are asking animal lovers to help name an endangered female brown kiwi...
Oct. 17, 2017
The Smithsonian’s National Zoo recently welcomed a new sloth bear into its zoological family. Niko, a 2-year-old male, arrived Oct. 6 from NaturZoo Rheine in Germany and joins 3-year-old female sloth...