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Conservation News

A camera trap photo of a hoofed animal (called a pronghorn) with thick fur, big ears and large, flattened antlers walking across the wide-open grasslands of the American prairie
Aug. 12, 2019
How can you begin to study something as vast and diverse as the American prairie? Find out in the latest blog from landscape ecologist Hila Shamoon who is stationed at American Prairie Reserve in...
A bird called a long-billed curlew flies across a blue sky. Its wings are outstretched and its long, thin, curved bill is open.
Jul. 31, 2019
All seasons on the prairie are special. But spring is just a little more special than the rest, as every day birds return for summer breeding season.
Five female Persian onagers in a field.
Jul. 29, 2019
Persian onagers are an amazing species! And even though they are not one of the iconic species that you may know, as someone who gets to care for them and spend time with them every day, let me tell...
Virginia Working Landscapes program director Amy Johnson holds an eastern meadowlark.
Jul. 19, 2019
At first glance, Virginia’s farmlands seem quite peaceful. But beneath the swaying fields of hay lies a bustling ecosystem for the birds that call the grasslands home. One such avian animal—the...
Kristina Anderson-Teixeria
Jul. 18, 2019
Kristina Anderson-Teixeira—a forest ecologist at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute’s (SCBI) Conservation Ecology Center and at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute’s Center for...
A camera trap photo of a jaguar with spotted fur stalking across a leaf-covered forest floor toward the camera
Jul. 16, 2019
Wild animals are very elusive, so how do scientists learn about their behavior and life history? Find out how Smithsonian scientists use camera traps and acoustic recorders to covertly monitor...
A newborn scimitar-horned oryx calf with tan skin and large ears stands in the grass near its mother, an oryx named Chari, and another adult oryx
Jul. 16, 2019
The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute's herd of scimitar-horned oryx is growing. Keepers welcomed five calves during the past few weeks.
A scientist takes a biological sample from a tapir that is fitted with a GPS collar
Jul. 05, 2019
Why is this mountain tapir wearing a collar? His movements and behaviors are being tracked via satellite by Smithsonian scientists!
Red panda cub being weighed.
Jun. 25, 2019
Moonlight, a 4-year-old red panda, gave birth to a cub overnight June 12 at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia. Moonlight and the cub appear to be doing well and...
bioanalyzer
Jun. 21, 2019
The study, which is among the first genomic studies on otters, found that both the sea otter and giant otter have lost a considerable number of genes related to the sense of smell — a faculty that is...
An Asian elephant with large tusks walks near huts in Myanmar
Jun. 12, 2019
Large animals, like the Asian elephants, have evolved to grow and mature at a different rate than many smaller species monitored by organizations like the International Union for the Conservation of...
Jun. 10, 2019
Read a copy of the testimony the director of the Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute gave before House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology on June 4, 2019.
Community members in Laikipia, Kenya, examine exhibit panels from the mobile Outbreak DIY exhibit
Jun. 04, 2019
Education is often touted as the answer to large-scale issues like health security. But what does this actually look like on the ground? In late March, Global Health Program staff traveled to...
Global Health Program wildlife veterinarian Maureen Wanjiku Kamau with a young rhinocerous
Jun. 03, 2019
Smithsonian veterinary research fellow Dr. Maureen Wanjiku Kamau is leading a study on wild eastern black rhinos in Kenya. Find out how her team is using poop to learn more about rhino reproduction.
A black rhino with thick skin, large ears, a stocky body and a long horn protruding from the end of its snout
May. 29, 2019
A new study from SCBI and partners compares the bacterial communities (microbiome) in the gut of wild rhinos to that of those in human care, resulting in a recommendation for a health-boosting rhino...
FMBC field researcher Emma Cox holds a small bird, called a black-and-white warbler, in her hand and prepares to release it after banding it.
May. 23, 2019
In April, the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center spent two weeks in Texas for the second season of “Ecology of Urban Birds,” a program that brings middle school students into the field with...
Three sable antelope standing in a field.
May. 17, 2019
DNA is the ultimate library, and scientists at SCBI’s Center for Species Survival and Center for Conservation Genomics are cataloging it as diligently as any librarians. 
A herd of bison running through grasslands in Montana. One of the bison is wearing a GPS tracking collar around its neck.
May. 08, 2019
Landscape ecologist Hila Shamoon spent the first two weeks of April working with American Prairie Reserve to place GPS collars on plains bison.
Grasshopper-Virginia Working Landscapes
May. 03, 2019
Many creatures, great and small, call grasslands their home, including the most diverse and abundant animals: arthropods! Knowing which grasses provide the ideal habitat for arthropods will...
A newly hatched Guam kingfisher rests on a soft white towel at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
Apr. 26, 2019
A tiny egg nestled in an incubator at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute began wiggling and cracking April 22 until a featherless Guam kingfisher chick emerged. Guam kingfishers are...
Two small banded dwarf cichlids with light stripes down their bodies and fins down their backs swim over a green leaf
Apr. 26, 2019
In November 2018, Smithsonian researchers spent two weeks in Peru counting and identifying fish. In part two of this story, meet more of the animals they encountered and find out how their work could...
A small, iridescent red and blue fish found in Peru. Researchers believe it is a red-blue Peru tetra fish but need to conduct a DNA analysis to confirm
Apr. 23, 2019
One fish, two fish, red-blue Peru tetra fish. In November 2018, Smithsonian researchers spent two weeks in Peru counting and identifying fish. In this photo essay, see some of the animals they...
Global Health Program veterinarian Dr. Maureen Kamau and cheetah cub Pink.
Apr. 19, 2019
The Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute's dedicated staff are at the forefront of shaping the world’s understanding of animals and their habitats. Wildlife conservation is...
A brightly colored bird perched on a thin branch. It has a yellow chest, red head and long, slender tail feather
Apr. 19, 2019
Humans have Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat. Wire-tailed manakins have social networks, too. For more than 17 years, Smithsonian ornithologist Brandt Ryder has studied this bird's unique social...
Adult Tibetan antelope.
Apr. 09, 2019
In a rural area of west China, the highest railroad on earth transports visitors from Qinghai to Tibet (QTR).