Birds are considered an indicator species, representing the health of entire ecosystems.

North America Has Lost Nearly 3 Billion Birds Since 1970

The staggering population loss of 29 percent of North American birds could signal an ecological crisis

By day the members of the Megatherium Club, united by youth, ambition, intelligence and a deep and abiding love of the natural world, hunched over jars of marine worms in alcohol or endless trays of fossils…At night they were ready to cut loose.

The Hard-Drinking Early Smithsonian Naturalists of the Megatherium Club

William Stimpson created a fraternity of young scientists and named it for an extinct North American sloth

Najin (left) and Fatu, the last two northern white rhinos, on the day before their eggs were harvested.

Eggs Successfully Collected from the Last Two Northern White Rhinos

Advances in fertility science will hopefully allow researchers to implant embryos of the species into surrogate southern white rhinos

Biswamoyopterus gaoligongensis

New Species of Giant Flying Squirrel Discovered in China

Weighing 3 to 4 pounds, the Mount Gaoligong flying squirrel was recently found in Yunnan province

Fatu, born in 2000, is one of the world’s last two surviving northern white rhinos. In this 2013 photograph, she’s hanging out with southern white rhinos at Kenya’s Pejeta Nature Conservancy.

San Diego’s Frozen Zoo Offers Hope for Endangered Species Around the World

The largest animal cryobank in the world is a rich source of genetic knowledge that may one day be used to bring endangered species back from the brink

The "Game of Thrones'" Red Wedding has nothing on naked mole-rats

After a Murderous Rise to the Top, a Naked Mole-Rat Queen Reigns Supreme

Mole-rat monarch asserted dominance by giving birth to three pups on Monday morning—all hail her majesty

The fire in Griffith Park was largely extinguished by late Friday

How the Los Angeles Zoo Prepares Its Animals to Face Natural Disasters

The institution sprung into action late last week, evacuating birds and some smaller primates before firefighters contained a nearby blaze in Griffith Park

Nyack was known for his vocal roars and laid back personality

A Lioness Killed the Father of Her Cubs in Rare Attack at Indianapolis Zoo

Prior to the incident, 12-year-old Zuri had never shown signs of aggression toward 10-year-old Nyack

Astronauts aboard the International Space Station captured incredible images of Hurricane Florence on Sept. 10.

Five Ways Cultural Institutions, Landmarks and Zoos Are Prepping for Hurricane Florence

Many museums are closing their doors, while zoos and aquariums are moving their animals indoors

Even at three-and-a-half months, the inquisitive Moke has already begun to explore his surroundings and approach the other members of his troop.

At Nearly Four Months Old, the Zoo’s Youngest Gorilla Has Begun to Show His Rambunctious Roots

Moke, the National Zoo’s first infant gorilla in nine years, enlivens the primate house with chatter and play.

MASTODON MAXIMUS. CUV. [Cuvier]; Orra White Hitchcock (1796–1863); Amherst, Massachusetts; 1828–1840; pen and ink and watercolor wash on cotton, with woven tape binding

Art, Science and Religion Blend in Exhibition Honoring Illustrator Orra White Hitchcock

Orra’s paintings and drawings depict the natural world in colorful detail

Clay's team captured 15 female gnus for study. Following controlled exposure to male mating calls in an experimental setting, the quadrupeds (and their offspring) were released back into the wild.

How Noisy Males Control the Gnu’s Cycle

New research shows that ovulation in Serengeti wildebeests is accelerated and synchronized by the yammering of eager males

The National Zoo's female giant panda Mei Xiang, mother of three, will not give birth this summer.

Giant Panda Mei Xiang Will Not Give Birth

After a week and a half of waiting, the National Zoo confirms that Mei Xiang experienced a pseudopregnancy.

Izzy photographed with the two infants on her back on Friday, June 30.

National Zoo Reports Death of Infant Golden Lion Tamarin

The golden lion tamarin and its sibling were born on Friday, marking the first births of tamarins for the Zoo in a decade

Don't be fooled by this roly-poly furball. These mischevious creatures need constant attention and round-the-clock care.

Why Photographing Pandas Is More Challenging Than You Might Think

Photojournalist Ami Vitale describes her years of work capturing the lovable furballs

Curasub commissioner/owner Adriaan Schrier and lead DROP scientist Carole Baldwin aboard the custom-built submersible.

How a Team of Submersible-Bound Scientists Redefined Reef Ecosystems

In tropical Curaçao, Smithsonian researchers are constantly confronting the unknown

Ali the Aardvark gets cozy as baby Winsol nurses at the Cincinnati Zoo. Ali is one of hundreds of animals whose milk samples are sent to the Smithsonian National Zoo’s milk repository for scientific research.

What Aardvark Milk Reveals about the Evolution of Lactation

Samples from the Smithsonian National Zoo’s Exotic Animal Milk Repository help scientists study the unifying trait of all mammals

An African lion enjoying an afternoon snack in the falling snow of 2012 at the National Zoo.

How Zoo Animals Stay Safe and Warm in the Arctic Blast

From flamingo 'hot tubs' to heated termite mounds, zoos have plenty of tricks to keep creatures safe when the forecast freezes over

A European bison, also referred to as a wisent

A Wild Bison Was Spotted in Germany for the First Time in Two Centuries. Then It Was Shot

As conservationists work to restore the once mighty European bison, they must face misunderstandings from concerned citizens

Taken in 1938, this image captures one of the once abundant Javan tigers. Hunting drove the big cats to extinction.

Long Thought Extinct, Javan Tiger May Have Been Spotted in Indonesia

Last sighted in 1976, many are hopeful that the Javan tiger still lives

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