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by Prince Of Petworth July 12, 2018 at 2:30 pm 0


3001 Connecticut Ave., NW

UPDATE: Related:

From a press release:

“Statement on National Zoo Security-Access Plan

The safety and security of the visitors, staff and animals are the No. 1 priority at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo. The Zoo has an existing perimeter that currently has 13 pedestrian entrances. To improve the Zoo’s overall security and visitor experience, the number of pedestrian entrances will be decreased to three–Connecticut Avenue, the lower Zoo (Harvard Street) and the bus parking area near giant panda habitat. These are the three entrances that the vast majority of visitors use now.

Limiting the number of ways people enter the Zoo will enhance security and safety year-round. For the past four years during high visitation days or when there has been an increased threat level, security at these entrances has included bag checks and additional screening. The Zoo will continue this practice. On most days, visitors will use these three entrances as they do now.

The only part of the Visitor Access and Security Fencing Project proposal put forward to the National Capital Planning Commission (NCPC) for approval is the installation of additional fencing, which will begin in 2019. Although the proposal before NCPC refers to additional phased security concepts, these proposals are not under review by NCPC at this time. The Smithsonian is committed to engaging in a public process before submitting new security concepts for review by NCPC. Comments can be submitted to the Smithsonian via [email protected]

FAQ Smithsonian’s National Capital Planning Commission Proposal: (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth July 6, 2018 at 9:45 am 0

“Dear PoPville,

The National Capital Planning Commission is scheduled to vote on the first phase of the security check-point plan at the National Zoo (a perimeter security fence) next week.

Folks can submit comments on-line (click the “Submit Comments” button.)

Here’s the comment I just submitted:

I am writing as a member of the general public to oppose the National Zoological Park’s proposed Supplemental Perimeter Fencing,
NCPC File Number 7986.

This proposal is unnecessary and unwise. (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth June 24, 2018 at 10:02 pm 0


Photo by PoPville flickr user John Sonderman

From the National Zoo on Sunday:

“Beginning today, the David M. Rubenstein Family Giant Panda Habitat will be closed to keep a quiet area around female giant panda Mei Xiang’s den. Although keepers are not able to confirm if she is pregnant, Mei Xiang is exhibiting expected, normal behaviors after the secondary hormone rise that are in line with both a pregnancy and pseudo, or false, pregnancy. She is building a nest in her den, has a decreased appetite, is sleeping more and is reacting to loud noises. Paws-crossed! (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth June 3, 2018 at 10:02 pm 0


Photo by PoPville flickr user Eric P.

I’m not saying it’s time freak out but I’m also not saying don’t wildly anticipate the possibilities…

From the National Zoo:

“It’s been almost three months since Mei Xiang was artificially inseminated (AI). Keepers, veterinarians and Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute scientists have been monitoring her carefully ever since. Endocrinologists confirmed that her levels of urinary progesterone began to rise May 2. This period is what scientists call the secondary rise. The first rise was when Mei Xiang was artificially inseminated in March. (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth April 16, 2018 at 4:30 pm 0


“Calaya and her infant in the Great Ape House at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo.”

From the National Zoo:

For the first time in nine years, primate staff at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute are celebrating the birth of a male western lowland gorilla. He was born at 6:25 p.m. April 15 and is named Moke [Mo-KEY], which means “junior” or “little one” in the Lingala language. (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth March 2, 2018 at 10:10 am 0


Photo by PoPville flickr user Brian Mosley

“Due to the high winds the National Zoo will be closed to the public today.”

And the good stuff:

“A team of reproductive scientists, veterinarians and panda keepers at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute performed an artificial insemination on giant panda Mei Xiang today, March. 1. (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth February 22, 2018 at 9:55 am 0


Photo by PoPville flickr user Eric P.

From the National Zoo:

“Keepers have noticed some dramatic changes in Mei Xiang and Tian Tian’s behavior during the past several days. On Saturday, Feb. 17, Mei Xiang started showing behavioral changes that indicate she may be going into estrus within the next few weeks. It is normal for Mei Xiang to exhibit these types of behavioral changes for a short time before she reaches peak estrus, which is the 24 to 72 hours out of the year that she is capable of conceiving a cub. Last Saturday, keepers immediately noticed that her behavior had changed when they arrived at the David M. Rubenstein Family Giant Panda Habitat. Mei Xiang chose to sleep in until after 7 a.m., which is unusual for her. She usually greets keepers at her door at 6:30 a.m. sharp, looking for a little morning snack and in eager anticipation of the bamboo breakfast in her yard. After Mei Xiang roused herself, she ignored her bamboo breakfast. Instead, she wandered around her yard scent-marking, which is a behavior that increases pre-estrus. She also vocalized at Tian Tian, but the vocalization was a moan, indicating that Mei Xiang is not interested in spending time in the same space as Tian Tian or breeding quite yet.

Tian Tian is always very perceptive and responsive to even subtle changes in Mei Xiang’s hormones that indicate she may be coming into estrus. (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth February 4, 2018 at 10:05 pm 0


Nutmeg and Jackie via Smithsonian’s National Zoo

Big news from the Zoo for Red Panda lovers:

“Just in time for Valentine’s Day, two animals that are red and white and beloved by everyone made their debut on Asia Trail! Meet Nutmeg and her son, Jackie, who came to the Zoo from the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in December.

Get the scoop on the Zoo’s new red panda pair from animal keeper Mariel Lally.

At 8.5 months old, Jackie is a bit smaller than his 4-year-old mom, Nutmeg. While Nutmeg has a very light face and blonde hips, Jackie’s forehead is red. Beneath his eyes, he has dark red teardrop markings that are very pronounced.

Personality-wise, Jackie is playful and inquisitive; he will walk right up to keepers to check out what is going on. Nutmeg, on the other hand, is a bit more subdued and prefers to observe her surroundings from a distance. While she is friendly, all interactions with keepers take place on her terms.

They made their debut on Asia Trail last week and seem to enjoy exploring the red panda habitat. They spent the majority of their time climbing trees, following one another around the yard, and smelling where our 3-year-old female red panda, Asa, has been scent marking. Sometimes Nutmeg and Jackie will go their separate ways, but more often than not Nutmeg is leading the way. Sometimes, Jackie is so interested in an object in the yard that he will not notice mom is many paces ahead. Once he does, though, he will run after her and give her a nice big hug.”

Read more about Nutmeg and Jackie here.


Jackie via Smithsonian’s National Zoo

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