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Zoo News Archive

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...
A young giant panda cub with black-and-white fur, round ears and small claws stands on a table in the indoor panda habitat at the Smithsonian's National Zoo during a routine exam
Jan. 01, 2021
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji continues to explore and take on new challenges—like climbing up rockwork in the indoor habitat he shares with mother Mei Xiang. 
A dama gazelle with long legs, a slender neck and short, curved horns grazes in a grassy yard on a sunny day
Dec. 31, 2020
Tracking an animal's weight is an important part of animal care, but gazelles are known to be flighty and nervous. So, how do keepers convince them to step onto a scale? Find out in this update from...
A close up photo of a cheetah cub's face with mouth open and tiny teeth showing
Dec. 28, 2020
From a litter of chirping cheetahs and the birth of a lovable giant panda cub to groundbreaking coral reef research and new strides in animal care, there were many milestones to celebrate this year.
A young giant panda cub with black-and-white fur, round ears and small claws stands on a table in the indoor panda habitat at the Smithsonian's National Zoo during a routine exam
Dec. 18, 2020
This week, we saw the sassy side of our almost 4-month-old giant panda cub, Xiao Qi JI, as he let out a loud and feisty bark! 
Dama gazelle Adara at the Cheetah Conservation Station.
Dec. 11, 2020
Cheetah Conservation Station keepers at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo are mourning the loss of Adara, a female dama gazelle who was humanely euthanized Dec. 7. She was 14 years old. 
Dec. 9 | Chief veterinarian Dr. Don Neiffer examines 3.5-month-old giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji.
Dec. 11, 2020
Xiao Qi Ji is on the move! While our 3.5-month old giant panda cub is still sharpening his walking skills, he appears to be eager to explore the world around him. 
Two giant pandas, a female named Mei Xiang and a male named Tian Tian, sit side by side in the snow eating bamboo
Dec. 07, 2020
Giant pandas, icons and ambassadors for the efforts to save the species in Washington, D.C., since 1972, will continue to live at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo through the end of 2023.
Three-month-old giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji on Dec. 2, 2020 at Smithsonian's National Zoo.
Dec. 04, 2020
November was an exciting month for the Zoo's giant panda cub! He received a clean bill of health during his third veterinary exam, was named "Xiao Qi Ji" by his fans around the world and took his...
Steve Sarro poses in front of some African Penguins
Dec. 04, 2020
Waddle along with Small Mammal House Curator and African Penguin Species Survival Plan coordinator, Steven J. Sarro, as he shares his experiences working with zoos and penguins!
Three-month-old giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji on Dec. 2, 2020 at Smithsonian's National Zoo.
Dec. 04, 2020
That’s one small step for Xiao Qi Ji, one giant leap into our hearts. Our little giant panda cub marked yet another big milestone. Over the Thanksgiving holiday, he took his very first steps! 
Andean bear Brienne on exhibit.
Dec. 04, 2020
The new bear in town is curious, daring and incredibly charming—meet Andean bear Brienne! This fall, she joined her grandmother Billie Jean and beau-to-be Quito at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo. 
Three of Cheetah Echo's cubs sit in their yard on some "furniture", including a new firehose bed.
Dec. 04, 2020
This International Cheetah Day, we are excited to look toward the future for both Echo’s nearly 8-month-old cubs and this vulnerable species.
Sanderling Armstrong on the sand
Dec. 04, 2020
The Bird House team at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo has many beaks to feed, including 23 species of migratory songbirds and shorebirds.
a giant panda cub named Xiao Qi Ji lies sleepily on a white table
Nov. 25, 2020
In their latest update, giant panda keepers Marty Dearie and Mariel Lally reflect on the “little miracle” that is Xiao Qi JI and share details about a recent field trip where the cub spotted his dad...
The Smithsonian's National Zoo's 3-month-old giant panda cub (Nov. 18, 2020).
Nov. 23, 2020
The Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute’s 3-month-old giant panda cub received his name today. After five days of voting and just under 135,000 votes, the winning name is...
A small, flightless bird called a Guam rail with long legs and toes, and brown and silver fur walks through a mulchy habitat at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
Nov. 20, 2020
We care for many rare and endangered species here at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia, including a little brown bird named Tasi. Tasi is a 4-year-old Guam rail...
The Zoo's 3-month-old giant panda cub during a vet exam Nov. 18, 2020.
Nov. 20, 2020
Big milestones are on the horizon for our giant panda cub. Tomorrow he turns 3 months old, and on Monday he’ll receive his name! (Did we mention tips the scale in double digits?) Get the update from...
Nov. 20, 2020
A note from the Zoo's Director, Steve Monfort, on the closing of the Zoo.
Zoo entrance with icon banners.
Nov. 19, 2020
Due to rising regional and national cases related to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, all Smithsonian museums, including the National Zoo, will temporarily close to the public starting Monday,...
Nov. 19, 2020
Due to rising regional and national cases related to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, all Smithsonian museums, including the National Zoo, will temporarily close to the public starting Monday,...
two poisonous crested rats touch nose-to-nose
Nov. 19, 2020
The African crested rat's fur is packed with a poison so lethal it can fell an elephant, and just a few milligrams can kill a human. Researchers found that it's the only mammal known to sequester...