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Center for Species Survival News

A female Persian onager, a tan colored wild ass, walking in a hilly field.
Aug. 23, 2019
Green Hill Barn, where our herd of Persian onager mares lives, has been full of excitement during the past few weeks since the arrival of our first foal of the year.
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...
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...
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...
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...
lemur tree frog
Apr. 05, 2019
Stories about amphibians don’t always end with “happily ever after,” but scientists around the globe, including Brian Gratwicke at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, are working together...
Two whooping cranes (large birds with long, thin legs, long necks, and pointed bills) explore their new habitat at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia
Dec. 18, 2018
Twelve whooping cranes, one of the most endangered species of crane in the world, moved to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia, Dec. 16. The six mated-pairs will...
A large elkhorn coral underwater on a sunny day in Curacao
Dec. 12, 2018
Smithsonian scientists and partners in Florida and Curaçao have become the first to use cryopreserved (frozen) coral sperm to support gene migration of coral populations that would otherwise remain...
Guam kingfisher chick
Jul. 06, 2018
A female Guam kingfisher, a brightly colored bird and one of the most endangered bird species on the planet, hatched at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) in Front Royal, Virginia...
Jun. 01, 2018
Maned wolves in the North American population have their own matchmaker. Nucharin Songsasen is a biologist at SCBI and Species Survival Plan coordinator. It's her job to decide which animals to breed...
Lady Elliot Reef
Apr. 24, 2018
Smithsonian scientists are part of an expanding global effort set to tackle what could be the most ambitious project in the history of biology—sequencing the DNA of all eukaryotic species on Earth,...
Cheetah cub Nandi.
Apr. 20, 2018
Over the last year, a record 91 cheetah cubs have been born at institutions affiliated with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Cheetah Species Survival Plan (SSP). In this Q&A, Smithsonian...
Maned wolf pups
Feb. 22, 2018
Four maned wolf pups were born at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Dec. 23, 2017. During much of their first weeks they were nestled in a den but are now exploring more areas of their...
White rhinoceros
Feb. 09, 2018
The future of rhinos could depend on their DNA. Scientists In collaboration with researchers in the United States, South Africa and Russia, Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute scientist Klaus-...
Kamala and Maharani at the Elephant Trails exhibit.
Feb. 02, 2018
To better understand the role diet and exercise play in elephant health, Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute endocrinologist Janine Brown studied the animals’ hormones.
Guam rail chick
Jan. 29, 2018
The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) is experiencing a Guam rail baby boom. Three chicks, covered in black downy feathers with oversized feet, hatched in January. 
Variable Harlequin Frogs Return to the Wild
Jan. 19, 2018
Through years of research and breeding, Smithsonian scientists have created a thriving variable harlequin frog colony in human care and released approximately 500 healthy frogs in Panama’s Colon...
Domestic cat oocyte (egg)
Jan. 18, 2018
An egg-citing new finding from the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute could help bolster the success of assisted reproduction for some of the most endangered species—with implications for...
Keeper Erica Royer holding a Guam rail
Jan. 05, 2018
Guam rails are classified as extinct in the wild, but staff at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and partners are working to change their fate.  Last September, they repatriated two...
Zoo staff train colleagues in India.
Nov. 03, 2017
Smithsonian staff recently traveled to India, where they are training colleagues on best practices in animal care, husbandry and veterinary medicine.
Black-footed ferret
Oct. 13, 2017
Ever wonder what causes black-footed ferrets to breed successfully, play aggressively or simply survive in the wild? Researchers at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) recently...
Jul. 21, 2017
Animal keepers at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute are hand-raising a dama gazelle calf. The male calf was born July 4.
Black-and-white image of a zebrafish embryo under a microscope
Jul. 13, 2017
A new cryopreservation study has sweeping implications for wildlife conservation and human health. In a paper published July 13 in ACS Nano, the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and...