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Zoo News Archive

six cheetahs stand over a food bowl
Jul. 07, 2022
What does feeding time look like for five growing cheetah cubs and their mom? Watch the video to find out how fast Rosalie and her cubs can devour more than 10 pounds of meat.
A black tree monitor (lizard) with dark coloration, an elongated body and a long, slender tail rests on a branch with its head raised
Jul. 01, 2022
Get to know the intelligent, elusive black tree monitor in this Q&A with the assistant curator of Reptile Discovery Center.
Fennec Fox sitting on rock
Jul. 01, 2022
Many of the Zoo’s animals are built for extreme temperatures, including the fennec fox! Learn how animal keepers care for these desert dwelling foxes.
Red panda Xena holds up her left paw.
Jul. 01, 2022
They’re sweet, outgoing and always in the mood for food. Meet Scarlet, Xena and Taizong, the new red pandas at our Front Royal, Virginia, campus!
An eastern tiger swallowtail searches for nectar from a flower.
Jun. 21, 2022
Did you know that the fuzzier an animal is, the better it picks up pollen? Or that most pollination happens by happy accident? Get the buzz on pollinators from Donna Stockton, an entomologist and...
White-naped crane chick receives a meal worm from its parent.
Jun. 17, 2022
For the first time, a whooping crane—one of the most endangered species of crane in the world —hatched May 26 and is thriving at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) in Front Royal,...
An aerial photo of two horseshoe crabs on the sand in shallow tidal waters
Jun. 03, 2022
The ocean has many unusual inhabitants, but few are as strange and ancient as the horseshoe crab.
A binturong is perched atop a platform in its exhibit.
Jun. 03, 2022
Put your senses to the test at the Claws and Paws Pathway! Follow your nose to the binturongs, who smell like buttered popcorn, and keep your eyes peeled for petite Pallas’s cats hiding in plain...
A newly hatched brown kiwi stands next to its egg.
Jun. 03, 2022
In March and April, keepers at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia, celebrated the arrival of two male kiwi chicks! Get to know them in this update from the bird...
Two newly hatched Bourret’s box turtles and an adult box turtle sitting on moss
Jun. 01, 2022
Slow down for a minute and meet the Zoo’s turtle-y awesome Asian box turtles! Read on to find out what it takes to care for Bourret’s box turtles and other species.
A binturong stands on a wooden elevated platform. There is mesh and leafy green trees in the background.
May. 27, 2022
Prowl the new Claws & Paws Pathway exhibit opening to the public Friday, May 27. Visitors will encounter a North American porcupine, bobcats and the Zoo’s newest residents — binturongs and Pallas...
A small wood turtle stands in a pile of fallen leaves in a forest
May. 23, 2022
Wood turtles are one of the most endangered freshwater turtles in North America. To ensure a future for these reptiles, scientists first need to understand where wood turtles remain and how many are...
Harbor Seal Rabbit
May. 18, 2022
We are sad to share that our male harbor seal, Rabbit, died May 13. He was 15 years old. 
A flock of flamingos stands on sandy ground next to a pool of water. Their enclosure is seen behind them with mesh fencing.
May. 03, 2022
Staff at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute are devastated and mourning the loss of 25 American flamingos and one Northern pintail duck killed by a fox yesterday in the...
Vietnamese mossy frog sitting on a branch
Apr. 28, 2022
Meet the cutest clump of “moss” you ever did see: the Vietnamese mossy frog! In spring, the Reptile Discovery Center team celebrated the arrival of 50 hatchlings. Learn what it takes to set the mood...
A hellbender lies on colorful gravel. Behind the salamander is the edge of a large rock
Apr. 28, 2022
Snot otter, devil dog, or hellbender? Whatever name you call them, they are largest salamander in the Americas. Check out how animal keeper Matt Neff cares for and studies these unique salamanders!
Zebra running through a field
Apr. 28, 2022
Young animals learn what it means to be an animal—what to eat, how to behave and more—from their parents. For Yipes, our 1-year-old male Hartmann’s mountain zebra, those lessons most recently came...
Two gorillas sitting atop a boulder in their outdoor habitat
Apr. 28, 2022
April, or Ape-ril, is a great time to recognize our apes because many of them celebrate their birthdays this month! 
Lemur frog on a coconut shell
Apr. 28, 2022
'Hoppy' Amphibian Awareness Week! All week long, the Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute will be sharing stories about amazing amphibians and the scientists working to save...
Lesser kudu calves laying down next to each other.
Apr. 27, 2022
Cheetah Conservation Station keepers at Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute are rejoicing in the birth of two lesser kudu calves. For the second time in 6 months, Small...
A 6-month-old cheetah cub lays in the grass with four black Kong toys spread out in the grass in front of them.
Apr. 26, 2022
The 6-month-old cheetah cubs are growing well and are ready to play! Plus, their individual personalities are starting to shine through. Get the latest update on Rosalie's cubs from cheetah biologist...
Two pandas eating sitting on a rock formation eat an ice cake with bamboo and the number 50.
Apr. 26, 2022
In April, the commissary team was busy creating colorful ice cakes for giant pandas Mei Xiang, Tian Tian and Xiao Qi Ji in celebration of the 50th anniversary of giant pandas at the Zoo.
A video "play" button over a still of Asian elephant Swarna standing in a sandy yard eating browse
Apr. 20, 2022
When female Asian elephant Swarna joined our herd in May 2014, her routine tooth exams showed an unusual shape and wear pattern on her teeth. Elephant dentistry specialists joined the Zoo’s team to...
Two pandas eating sitting on a rock formation eat an ice cake with bamboo and the number 50.
Apr. 16, 2022
To commemorate 50 years of unprecedented achievement in the care, conservation, breeding and study of giant pandas, the Smithsonian's National Zoo’s in-residence giant panda family—Tian Tian, Mei...
A cheetah and her five cubs resting together on a pile of hay in a grassy yard
Apr. 13, 2022
Did you know that all animals have trillions of microscopic bacteria living inside them? These communities of microbes, known as microbiomes, play an important role in keeping animals healthy.