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Zoo News Archive

Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji climbs atop a structure made of criss-crossed logs.
Feb. 26, 2021
On Sunday, Feb. 21, giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji turned 6 months old. To celebrate, our half-birthday boy tried yet another new food: homemade applesauce made from cooked apples. 
One of the cheetah cubs looks at the camera with a snowy background behind it.
Feb. 25, 2021
At almost 11 months old, our cheetah cubs' personalities are shining! See Jabari, Hasani, Erindi and Amabala in the snow, and get an update on their training.
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji walks tentatively onto the concrete outside the panda house that leads to the grassy yard behind him
Feb. 19, 2021
Just a few days shy of turning 6 months old, giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji accompanied his mother, Mei Xiang, into their outdoor habitat for the first time. 
10-year-old Cheetah, Nick, lays in the grass.
Feb. 18, 2021
In December 2020, Smithsonian's Conservation and Biology Institute's cheetah breeding program celebrated a decade of success. Take a look at the top five most spot-acular accomplishments over the...
Five-month-old giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji leans against rockwork in his habitat with one paw up on a cylindrical-shaped enrichment toy and nibbles on his first biscuit
Feb. 12, 2021
Enrichment toy smeared with sweet potato just might be Xiao Qi Ji’s favorite treat. This week, keepers gave our giant panda cub a new food to nibble on: biscuits!
Small Mammal House Keeper stands next to the Zoo's four wallabies in their yard.
Feb. 05, 2021
Hop into caring for and discovering new things about Bennett's wallabies with real-life Zoo Guardian and animal keeper Esther Wray! 
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji stands near a light dusting of snow.
Feb. 05, 2021
Our chill giant panda cub had his first encounter with snow this week! 
Pale-furred animal with a long snout
Feb. 05, 2021
She’s a sweet-natured, eager explorer with a taste for juicy wax worms. Meet Chiquita, the Smithsonian’s National Zoo’s new tamandua! 
Five-month-old giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji takes his first taste of cooked sweet potato Jan. 21, 2021.
Feb. 05, 2021
January was a month full of firsts for the Smithsonian's National Zoo's giant panda cub, Xiao Qi Ji. The growing bear played with his first enrichment toys, sampled his first sweet potato, took his...
Hartmann's mountain zebra mother Mackenzie (L) and her son Yipes (R) in the snow at SCBI.
Feb. 05, 2021
On Feb. 2, our youngest zebra, Yipes, turned 7 months old. It is hard to believe that he is already a juvenile! Over the past few months, we have seen him become much more rambunctious and goofy like...
Feb. 04, 2021
The Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute (NZP/SCBI) and the Friends of the National Zoo (FONZ), an independent nonprofit organization, announce the dissolution of their...
Common nighthawk fitted with GPS transmitter.
Feb. 03, 2021
A new study led by Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center and University of Alberta biologists has created a comprehensive picture of the 10,000 kilometer migratory route of common nighthawks using GPS...
The lesser kudu family stand along the fence in their yard: Toba, Garrett, Kushu and Rogue.
Feb. 01, 2021
The lesser kudu family is growing up! Kushukuru turned 2 years old Jan. 12, and Toba turned 1 year old in October 2020. Find out what’s happening with the lesser kudu in this Q&A.
A giant panda cub stands in an area covered in a light dusting of snow and some scattered bamboo leaves.
Feb. 01, 2021
As snow blanketed the Washington, D.C., region Jan. 31, 2021, the Smithsonian's National Zoo's animals woke up to a winter wonderland.
Jan. 27 | Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji had his first taste of bamboo this week!
Jan. 29, 2021
Our little panda cub had a big week—from his livestream debut to his first taste of bamboo!
Five-month-old giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji takes his first taste of cooked sweet potato Jan. 21, 2021.
Jan. 22, 2021
Our sweet panda cub had his first taste of sweet potato. Spoiler alert: he gobbled it up. 
One of cheetah Echo's cubs shows its developing teeth to its keeper.
Jan. 21, 2021
The cheetah cubs' adult teeth are coming in, and carnivore keepers are documenting each development. Echo's 9-month-old cubs are SCBI's first litter of cheetahs to participate in this type of...
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji climbs the rockwork in his habitat Jan. 14, 2021.
Jan. 15, 2021
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji’s word of the week seems to be: play! Our 4.5-month-old cub’s interest in his surroundings really took off this week.
A bird, called a yellow-billed cuckoo, with a long tail and a yellow bill perches on a branch in a tree
Jan. 12, 2021
Cuckoos are extremely secretive birds and difficult to spot. Researchers are developing a tool, using remote sound recorders and artificial intelligence, to help detect them.
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji with an enrichment egg on Jan. 6, 2021.
Jan. 11, 2021
Spending more time out of the den presents giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji with more opportunities to explore—and play! 
Amahle, the Zoo's 6-year-old female lion, lays with one of the enrichment balls in an indoor enclosure.
Jan. 08, 2021
Lions, tigers, cheetahs and bobcats – let’s play! Keepers Katy Juliano, Adri Kopp and Amber Dedrick know how to get the big cats they work with pouncing, roaring and purring for enrichment.
A young Komodo dragon (monitor lizard) with a long, slender body resting on a tree branch
Jan. 08, 2021
The Reptile Discovery Center team is warming up to a new monitor lizard this winter. The young Komodo dragon, named Onyx, moved into his new habitat Dec. 10.
Jan. 08, 2021
Bird keeper Wesley Bailey shares an update on the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute's success breding brown kiwi. 
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji scales the rockwork in his habitat Jan. 6, 2021.
Jan. 08, 2021
As the calendar turns to 2021, it is human nature to reflect on the moments that sparked inspiration in an otherwise challenging year. Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji gave many who follow his milestones a...
A swift fox with a small body, bushy tail and tall, pointed ears stands on a mound of dirt on an open prairie. The fox is wearing a lightweight GPS collar around its neck.
Jan. 07, 2021
In the midst of the pandemic, as the story goes, a team set out to bring swift foxes back to a land they had disappeared from more than 50 years ago. Learn more in this update from landscape...