Animals

The world's oldest common loons, ABJ and Fe, in July 2020. The pair's 32nd and last hatched chick sits on Fe's back.

Follow the Soap Opera-Worthy Relationship Drama of the World's Oldest Common Loons

Called ABJ and Fe, the duo mated every spring for 25 years—but they split up in 2022. Now, they’re back at their Michigan breeding grounds, showing no signs of getting together

Antonia, one of the new black-footed ferret clones. The first black-footed ferret clone was born in 2020. The two new ferrets are the second and third successful clones.

Scientists Clone Two Black-Footed Ferrets From Frozen Tissues in Conservation Effort

The aim of cloning the animals is to increase the genetic diversity of the endangered species

Scientists brought to life the silent, sleeping songs of two great kiskadees.

Scientists Translate Sleeping Birds' Silent Songs Into Sound—and They May Have Recorded a Nightmare

Using surgically implanted electrodes and modeling, researchers brought to life the vocal muscle activity of sleeping great kiskadees

A researcher explores the depths of Umm Jirsan.

Extensive Desert 'Lava Tubes' Sheltered Humans for 7,000 Years, Archaeologists Find

Formed after volcanic activity, the underground caves periodically hosted early humans and their livestock in Saudi Arabia, facilitating cultural exchange

The vertebrae of the snake that the researchers dug up. Based on these bones, they estimate Vasuki indicus was between 36 and 50 feet long.

Scientists Uncover Bones of Massive Extinct Snake, Comparable in Size to the 43-Foot Titanoboa

The 27 vertebrae discovered in India suggest the enormous creature, dubbed Vasuki indicus, was between 36 and 50 feet long

An artist's rendering of two massive Ichthyotitan severnensis—a newly discovered species—swimming in the open ocean some 200 million years ago.

11-Year-Old Uncovers Fossils of Giant Ichthyosaur in England, the Largest Marine Reptile Ever Found, Scientists Say

The jawbone fragments belonged to an 82-foot-long creature that represents a new species, according to a new study

A hawksbill sea turtle munches away on a sponge near Juno Beach.

Journey Under the Sea With 15 Amazing Photos of Marine Life

These Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest images feature the captivating creatures that live beneath the waves

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What Happens When Animals Cross the Road

Our byways are an unnatural incursion into the natural world, especially when they’re allowed to fall into disuse. Meet a roadkill scientist and a journalist tracking how roads mess with nature—and what we can do about it

Hibernating common eastern bumblebee queens survived for a week while submerged underwater in a lab.

Hibernating Bumblebee Queens Can Survive Underwater for Up to a Week, Study Finds

Researchers discovered the insects’ unexpected superpower during an accidental laboratory snafu

Visitors left notes, photos and mementos at the base of an oak tree Flaco the Eurasian eagle-owl had favored after escaping from the Central Park Zoo. A memorial for Flaco was held there on March 3.

What Flaco the Owl’s Death Teaches Us About Making Cities Safer for Birds

Ornithologists and conservationists say humans can take key steps to make urban environments less hazardous for our avian friends

A two-spot octopus at the Aquarium of the Pacific in California. Female two-spot octopuses lay an average of 70,000 eggs.

Family Accidentally Ends Up With 50 Baby Octopuses After Their Pet—Thought to Be Male—Laid Dozens of Eggs

Now, the Oklahoma residents are working with aquariums and researchers that might take the babies

Captured at the zoo's in-house Paul Harter Veterinary Medical Center, the CT scan reassured veterinarians that the chick was doing just fine.

Peek Inside a California Condor Egg Just Before It Hatched, With This CT Scan of the Baby Bird

Last month, the San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance welcomed its 250th California condor chick in its breeding program, and the CT scan helped determine the bird was well-positioned for hatching

New research suggests that male bonobos exhibit aggressive behaviors such as chasing, charging, hitting and kicking more often than scientists thought.

Male Bonobos, Close Human Relatives Long Thought to Be Peaceful, Are Actually Quite Aggressive, Study Suggests

The new research found bonobos were three times more likely than chimpanzees to commit an act of physical aggression

The nearly complete skeleton has been identified as a member of an extinct fox species, Dusicyon avus, which once roamed Patagonia’s grasslands.

Did Ancient South Americans Keep Foxes as Pets?

At a cemetery in Argentina, a 1,500-year-old fox buried alongside humans suggests a "close relationship" between the species, researchers say

A fish appears on the live stream from the Netherlands' Weerdsluis lock in Utrecht.

You Can Help Migrating Fish Traverse a Dutch Canal By Ringing This Digital 'Doorbell'

The live stream from the Netherlands, which lets viewers notify a boat lock operator when fish need to be let through, has become a popular pastime for people around the world

Rangers look for tiny footprints in the sand and dig trenches to find the moles, which spend most of their lives underground.

Tiny and Rare, a Blind Mole That 'Swims' Through Desert Sand Is Spotted in Australia

Typically seen just five to ten times per decade, the elusive species has now been found for the second time in six months

An adorable seal pup

Why Do We Want to Squish and Squeeze Things That Are Cute? Science Has the Answer

The response dubbed “cute aggression” by researchers is the brain’s attempt to self-regulate when confronted with intense emotion

A beetle collection used for scientific study

Why Do So Many Beetle Species Exist?

Diet played a key role in the evolution of the vast beetle family tree

Gray wolves are typically much larger than coyotes.

A Michigan Hunter Thought He Killed a Large Coyote. It Turned Out to Be an Endangered Gray Wolf

Wildlife officials believe the animal was likely the first gray wolf spotted in the southern Lower Peninsula in 100 years

The babies were born on March 21, just six months after their parents were first introduced.

Adorable but Deadly Fluff Balls, Better Known as Pygmy Slow Lorises, Born at the Smithsonian's National Zoo

The two babies are part of an endangered species whose unbearable cuteness has made them a target for wildlife traffickers

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