Wildlife

Could we use volcanic energy as a power source?

Could Volcanoes Power Our Planet? And More Questions From Our Readers

You’ve got questions. We’ve got experts

To construct her sculptures, artist Phaan Howng used 3-D prints of plants in the Smithsonian Gardens collection, then mounted them onto a steel armature and base. They were then modified and finished with resin, resin foam, foam air dry clay, EVA foam and acrylic paint.

Fantastical Art Joins Hundreds of Blooming Orchids to Shed Light on Conservation Efforts

Smithsonian Gardens’ 28th annual orchid exhibition is underway at the Kogod Courtyard

Delias sambawana, a butterfly that hails from Indonesia, at the Florida Museum of Natural History.

Where Did Butterflies Come From? This Scientist Is On the Case

Akito Kawahara has spent his life devoted to lepidoptera. Now he’s correcting the record on where they first evolved

A logging road in Montana’s Lolo National Forest. America’s woodlands are carved up by obsolete roads that fragment wildlife habitat and degrade fragile ecosystems. Now ecologists are calling in bulldozers to rip them up.

Planet Positive

The Case for Destroying Old Forest Roads

Can demolishing abandoned dirt paths point the way to a more sustainable future?

A mother humpback whale and calf are seen off the coast of Brazil.

Earth’s Migratory Animals Are in Peril, According to U.N. Report

The Convention on Migratory Species warns that many birds, mammals and fish face numerous threats, but they can be saved

A dugong, also known as a sea cow, in a protected marine reserve in the Philippines. On the mammal’s underside, remora fish snack on parasites—and dugong poop.

The Dugong, a Huggable, Seagrass-Loving Sea Cow, Has a New Best Friend: Drones

Keeping tabs on the species' populations is surprisingly hard. A new aerial effort tracks the marks they leave behind

Paleontologists are still investigating what the carnivorous dinosaur Megalosaurus looked like.

Paleontologists Are Still Unraveling the Mystery of the First Dinosaur

Two hundred years after it was first named, scientists are just beginning to reveal the secrets of Megalosaurus

A Kronosaurus, one of the top predators in Cretaceous-era tropical oceans, prepares to feast on an ammonite.

Uncovering the Secrets of Colombia's Rich Fossil Deposits

Paleontologists are working hard to understand oceanic remains buried high in the Andes

A great white shark cruises through Atlantic waters.

Fifty Years After ‘Jaws,’ We’ve Learned a Lot About Great Whites

Though sport fishing tournaments and other activities led to population declines in the 1970s and 1980s, more recent science and conservation efforts have helped the sharks rebound

Ice worms spend most of the day burrowing their way through the cold, dark interior of the glacier, coming to the surface only in the afternoon to feed on algae and bacteria.

Alaska

This Eight-Day Festival Celebrates One of Alaska's Weirdest Worms

Welcome to the Cordova Ice Worm Festival, a quirky local tradition honoring the mysterious creatures that live in glacial ice

Captured mid-hop, the floppy feet of a white hare were indeed good luck for this photographer.

Smithsonian Photo Contest Galleries

Celebrate Winter in the Wild With 15 Photos of Animals Enjoying the Snow

These chilly but cute creatures will remind you what’s so wonderful about winter

A rosy-faced lovebird

These Parrots Use Their Beaks to Swing Across Branches Like Monkeys

Scientists have documented the unusual movement, dubbed "beakiation," for the first time

This small, bucolic waterfall in Western New York has one highly photogenic feature: a grotto lit by a dancing orange flame.

Seven Natural Phenomena Worth Traveling For

You need to be in the right place at the right time to see these celestial and earthly wonders

For species that reproduce sexually, every offspring is a gamble. Each has slightly different genes, giving it the potential to be carrying helpful, adaptive traits.

Can Animals Evolve Fast Enough to Keep Up With Climate Change?

Some may be able to, while others may not

A museum curator gives a sense of scale to the reconstructed jaws of the fossil shark Otodus megalodon.

Was Megalodon Slimmer Than Previously Thought?

A new study has spurred scientists to debate the shape of prehistory’s biggest shark

Ringed by dramatic mountains, Cumberland Bay, on the coast of South Georgia Island, is home to whales, seabirds, penguins and elephant seals. The island draws scores of sightseeing cruises each summer.

Humpbacks Have Rebounded in This Spot Decimated by Whaling

South Georgia Island’s Cumberland Bay has seen a resurgence of the marine mammals

A female elephant seal rests with her pup on the California coast. Pups in this population spend more days fattening up on mother’s milk than in southern populations on the Kerguelen Islands.

Inside Elephant Seal Pups' Race to the Depths

While northern pups dive right in, their southern cousins take their time

The earliest known fossil of epidermis was preserved due to unique circumstances.

This 288-Million-Year-Old Fossilized Scrap of Skin Is the World's Oldest

The remains, found in an Oklahoma cave, belonged to a lizard-like reptile

This blue whale skull is one of the largest in any collection on earth.

How an Eye-Popping Museum Specimen Boosted the Beleaguered Blue Whale

For decades, visitors to the Smithsonian could behold the immense size of the sea mammal with their own eyes

I thought I saw more red foliage this fall. Is that related to climate change?

Does Climate Change Affect Leaves' Fall Colors? And More Questions From Our Readers

You’ve got questions. We’ve got experts

Page 1 of 130