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Last updated on April 19, 2014 at 18:42 EDT

Latest Smithsonian National Zoological Park Stories

2009-06-18 17:00:22

One dad at the National Zoo in Washington -- a male rhea -- is learning that raising children gets easier as time goes on. The zoo's adult male rhea will be celebrating his second straight Father's Day with a brood of his own, having incubated and raised his charges once they were hatched, the zoo said in a news release Thursday. The four chicks, hatched May 8, are reaping the benefits of dad having a year of paternity under his wing. Zoo officials said he seemed unruffled about being a...

2009-05-03 14:44:27

Behavioral changes exhibited by the Washington National Zoo's giant female panda have put zoologists on a pregnancy alert, officials said. Detecting changes in her actions and hormones, zoo officials are cautiously optimistic Mei Xiang might be pregnant. However, they warn it may be another in a series of false pregnancies for the panda, The Washington Post reported Sunday. National Zoo spokeswoman Pamela Baker-Masson told the newspaper Mei Xiang is denning, meaning she is transporting bamboo...

2009-05-02 21:40:16

Giving a panda at the National Zoo in Washington a colonoscopy was a complicated procedure involving 10 employees, zoo officials said. Tai Shan, born at the zoo almost four years ago, needed the colonoscopy to determine whether he had recovered from eosinophilic colitis, which he developed last year, The Washington Post reported Saturday. The panda had to fast for a day before the procedure Friday. But he did not need to prepare by drinking quantities of liquid to clear his colon, as humans...

2009-03-01 13:55:57

The National Zoo says an elephant shrew was born and resided at the Washington tourist site for several weeks before zoo staff finally noticed it. The zoo said in a statement that Small Mammal House workers did not know it had been born until they saw three elephant shrews in the exhibit instead of two, The Washington Post reported Sunday. The infant shrew, which mammal house keepers estimate was likely born sometime in late January, has been enjoying a steady diet of crickets since being...

2009-01-14 17:49:53

The National Zoo in Washington issued a public appeal Wednesday for bamboo after the food supply for the zoo's giant pandas became dangerously low. The zoo said bamboo supplies on its grounds did not regrow this year and the main consumers of the green stalks, giant pandas Tai Shan, Mei Xiang and Tian Tian, collectively eat about 1,400 pounds of bamboo per week, The Washington Post reported Wednesday. Smaller amounts of bamboo are also consumed by raccoon-sized red pandas, elephants and...

2008-09-08 18:00:24

SEBASTOPOL, Calif., Sept. 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Nominated by prestigious zoological and wildlife-focused institutions worldwide for their environmentalism, self-motivation, scholarship, computer literacy, and creative talents, two contingents of enthusiastic teens will share time and resources with leading scientists, educators, photographers and filmmakers to learn about polar bears and their habitat. Polar Bears International (PBI) invests over $10,000 in each student from donations...

2008-09-02 16:58:09

Black-footed ferrets at the Smithsonian's National Zoo have birthed two kits sired by males who died in 1999 and 2000. These endangered ferrets were artificially inseminated in May with frozen semen from the two dead males, each giving birth to a kit in June, officials at the zoo announced today.  Three other black-footed ferret kits have been born using this method. The black-footed ferret is one of the most endangered animals in the world. The ferrets were said...

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2008-09-03 09:30:00

Smithsonian scientists use frozen semen to help save endangered species Two black-footed ferrets at the Smithsonian's National Zoo have each given birth to a kit that was sired by males who died in 1999 and 2000. These endangered ferrets"”part of a multi-institutional breeding and reintroduction program"”were artificially inseminated in May with frozen semen from the two deceased males, each giving birth to a kit on June 20 and 21 respectively. The sperm samples were collected and...

2008-08-13 15:00:36

Mei Xiang, a giant panda at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington, won't be giving birth to a cub this year as initially thought, zoo staff say. National Zoo staff said in a news release that while the female panda's declining urinary progesterone levels this July indicated a possible pregnancy, it appears the animal lost the developing fetus or has experienced a pseudo-pregnancy. Veterinarians were unable to locate a fetus in the giant panda following those initial pregnancy...

2008-08-01 12:00:47

By Paul Walsh, Star Tribune, Minneapolis Aug. 1--The Minnesota Zoo is celebrating a significant conservation accomplishment with the birth of its first Asian wild horse since 1988. Once extinct in the wild, these horses -- also known as a Przewalski's or Mongolian wild horse -- are making a comeback with help from the zoo. Born July 5, the horse is a descendant of an imported stallion from the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., and a female from Germany. The zoo says he is "very...