National Zoo

One reader wonders what graffiti was like before spray paint.

Ask Smithsonian

What Did Graffiti Look Like Before Spray Paint and More Questions From Our Readers

You've got questions. We've got experts.

Panda cub Xiao Qi Ji somersaults through the fresh powder.

See Pandas, Elephants, Cheetahs and More Enjoy a Snow Day at the National Zoo

At least six inches of snowfall covered Washington, D.C. this week causing closures and delays for residents, but the zoo animals were out to play

For the first time in 16 years, a pair of golden-headed lion tamarins were born on the morning of October 7, 2021. New mom Lola carries the new infants on her back and cradles them close to her body. 

Zoo's Historic Newborn Tamarin Twins Cling to Mom, Doing What Healthy Babies Do

Keepers worked with breeding parents Lola and Coco, who soon “become very interested in each other”

Viewers can watch mom Rosalie care for her five newborn cheetah cubs on a live streaming webcam.

Five Cheetah Cubs Born at Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute

Viewers can watch mother cheetah caring for her newborn babies on a live-streaming webcam

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death for captive apes.

Ask Smithsonian

How Do Gorillas Get Heart Disease? And More Questions From Our Readers

You've got questions. We've got experts

One year ago, the Smithsonian’s National Zoo welcomed Xiao Qi Ji—a precious giant panda born in the midst of a global pandemic.

Smithsonian Voices

Watch Giant Panda Cub Eating Sweet Potatoes, Tumbling With Toys and Tasting Snow

Celebrate Xiao Qi Ji's birthday with a look back at his first year

The most recent additions to the scimitar-horned oryx herd at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute are two calves borne from an improved artificial insemination method.

Future of Conservation

Two New Scimitar-Horned Oryx Calves Born Through Improved Methods of Artificial Insemination

The assisted reproduction method will help with population management efforts of these critically endangered species and their rewilding

Bald eagles are native to the United States, but caring for them is a unique and rare opportunity. Every bald eagle in human care, including Annie pictured here, is a rescue.

Smithsonian Voices

Meet Rescued Bald Eagles Tioga and Annie

Every one of these birds under human care is a rescue; it is illegal to breed and keep these birds otherwise

There's more to a flamingo than its bright pink feathers.

Smithsonian Voices

10 Things You Didn't Know About Flamingos

There's more to these birds than their bright pink feathers; get to know these delightfully unusual creatures

After L. A. Huffman, “A Dead Bull” from William T. Hornaday, “The Extermination of the American Bison, with a Sketch of Its Discovery and Life History,”

Smithsonian Voices

How Yellowstone Was Saved by a Teddy Roosevelt Dinner Party and a Fake Photo in a Gun Magazine

Chilling photos of slain buffalo in Yellowstone Park helped pass an act outlining punishment for poaching on public lands. But the photos were fakes

Citizen science can play a crucial role in helping solve the mystery of what’s happening to these birds.

Smithsonian Voices

Help Scientists Solve the Riddle of What Is Killing Birds in the Mid-Atlantic

Smithsonian bird researchers are calling on citizen scientists to help figure out the cause

Western lowland gorilla Moke eating a snack

Smithsonian Voices

The Science Behind the Snacks Animals Eat

Meals to please the palates of giant pandas, flamingos and fishing cats

Southern cassowary brothers Irwin (left) and Dundee (right).

Smithsonian Voices

Meet Cassowary Brothers Irwin and Dundee, Descendants of Dinosaurs

This giant bird is considered to be the dinosaurs’ closest living relative

A 17-year Brood X cicada.

Smithsonian Voices

Will 17-Year Cicadas Be a Buffet or Big Disturbance for Birds?

Local songbirds, including chickadees, bluebirds and cardinals, will take advantage of their abundance and Smithsonian scientists are eager to study

This 17-year Brood X cicada nymph is one step away from adulthood. After emerging from the dirt, cicadas typically crawl up the base of a tree to complete their final molt, expand their wings and fly away.

Smithsonian Voices

Will Animals at the Zoo Find Brood X Cicadas a Tasty Snack?

What will animals think of the impending bug buffet?

Beginning next month, visitors will be able to meet baby panda cub Xiao Qi Ji in person.When the Zoo opens on May 21, visitors will be able to meet baby panda cub Xiao Qi Ji in person. But fair warning—he might be napping.

Smithsonian Announces the Zoo and Seven Museums Open in May

You'll finally be able to see the baby panda in person; here's our comprehensive list of what's on view and tips for visiting

Some designers promote fashion lines based on kente cloth from Ghana.

When Is Kente Cloth Worn and More Questions From Our Readers

You've got questions. We've got experts

As many commercial operators and homeowners are shifting to LEDs, which tend to fall somewhere in the blue-white spectrum, the new results may have important implications beyond tropical rainforests.

Using Amber-Filtered Bulbs Instead of White Light Attracts Fewer Bugs

In a tropical rainforest study, 60 percent fewer insects visited traps illuminated in a golden glow. Researchers say the results may be widely applicable

Above: This leaf-tailed gecko hatchling receives his medication from a syringe, which he laps up with his impressive tongue.

Smithsonian Voices

Watch How Zookeepers Give Animals Their Meds

It takes more than just a spoonful of sugar to entice compliance from geckos, red pandas, kiwis and monkeys

Western lowland gorilla Baraka forages in the outdoor gorilla habitat at the Smithsonian's National Zoo. The silverback takes mealtime seriously, say his keepers.

Smithsonian Voices

How Do You Help a Gorilla With a Toothache?

When primate keepers at the Smithsonian's National Zoo noticed Baraka wasn't eating his meals, they wondered if this masked something more serious

loading icon