by Prince Of Petworth March 29, 2019 at 10:45 am 0


Giant panda Mei Xiang at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo. (Skip Brown/Smithsonian’s National Zoo)

From Smithsonian’s National Zoo:

“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 (may-SHONG) yesterday evening, March 28 at 9 p.m.

Scientists and keepers had been closely monitoring Mei Xiang’s behavior and hormones since she began displaying behavioral changes March 15, indicating she was entering her breeding season. Daily hormone reports showed Mei Xiang’s estrogen levels peaked the evening of March 27, which means she was ovulating and able to become pregnant. Female giant pandas are only in estrus, or able to become pregnant, for 24 to 72 hours each year.

Since the window when a giant panda can conceive a cub is so short, the Zoo’s panda team performed an artificial insemination on Mei Xiang. They artificially inseminated her using fresh semen from Tian Tian (t-YEN t-YEN) for the procedure. (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth March 7, 2019 at 12:15 pm 0


via Smithsonian’s National Zoo

From the National Zoo:

“We are sad to share that Diogo, one of our golden lion tamarins, died Monday, March 4. At 18 years old, Diogo was geriatric for a golden lion tamarin. Keepers and veterinarians made the difficult decision to euthanize him due to his rapidly declining quality of life caused by renal failure and gallstones. He did not have any offspring, but he and his mate Julie were ambassadors for their species. (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth March 4, 2019 at 1:45 pm 0


3001 Connecticut Ave., NW

“Dear PoPville,

The Zoo fencing plan is back at the National Capital Planning Commission.  The TSA-style security gate is gone from the front entrance (yay!), but the ridiculous fencing everywhere else remains.  Comments are due by noon on Wednesday!

Here’s what I got from NCPC:

At its Thursday, March 7 meeting NCPC will review revised preliminary and final site development plans for supplemental perimeter fencing at the National Zoo.

The project was original submitted for approval in July 2018, when the Commission postponed action due to outstanding questions from the public and Commission regarding the need for the enhanced security measures. The Smithsonian Institution indicated that this revised submission responds to feedback received from local leaders, civic groups, and the public. Major changes include the elimination of permanent security screening pavilions from further consideration.

The Executive Director’s Recommendation is available online, as is the final agenda. Both may also be accessed from https://www.ncpc.gov/. The meeting will begin at 1:00 pm and be streamed live at https://www.ncpc.gov/live/.

If you wish to provide comments on this revised submission, or register to speak on the submission, you may do so through noon on Wednesday, March 6, 2019. Further information is available here: https://www.ncpc.gov/participate/guidelines/.

NCPC Office of the Secretariat

And here’s a copy of what I just submitted: (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth February 14, 2019 at 12:45 pm 0


Tian Tian plays in the snow via Smithsonian’s National Zoo

From the National Zoo:

“You’re invited to a housewarming celebration! The new visitor exhibit in the panda house is finished and we would love for everyone to come visit and see it. On Feb. 23, we’ll be hosting a giant panda housewarming party, sponsored by Airbnb, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the David M. Rubenstein Family Giant Panda Habitat.

After a ribbon cutting ceremony at 9 a.m., the housewarming party will begin! The day will be filled with fun activities for pandas and panda enthusiasts alike. The giant and red pandas will receive special frozen treats throughout the day. The treats, created by our department of nutrition science, will be made to look like noodles. Bei Bei and the red pandas, Asa and Jackie, will receive their treats in their yards at 9:30 a.m. Mei Xiang and Tian Tian will receive their baskets at 1 p.m.

Special treats will also be available for human visitors as well! (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth February 4, 2019 at 1:45 pm 0

From the National Zoo:

“American Trail keepers celebrated the arrival of three North American river otter pups — two males and one female — Jan. 21. Born to first-time parents 2-year-old mother Ashkii and 2-year-old father Emmett, the pups are the first litter of North American river otters born at the Zoo in its 129-year history. Ashkii gave birth in an off-exhibit den, and keepers report that they have observed her tending to and nursing her offspring. (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth December 3, 2018 at 12:45 pm 0


“Three-year-old giant panda Bei Bei plays in the snow” last month

From the National Zoo:

“Panda House Will Occasionally Close On Weekday Mornings

The New Year will bring in some new changes to the panda house! Beginning in early December, the panda house at the David M. Rubenstein Family Giant Panda Habitat may occasionally close during weekday mornings to allow for the installation of a brand new exhibit! On those mornings, visitors will be able to see Mei Xiang, Tian Tian and Bei Bei outside. The pandas spend their mornings outside in their yards, and during the winter sometimes choose to spend the afternoons outside as well. They prefer cold temperatures and winter weather. If the panda house needs to close, it will reopen at 12 p.m., when the pandas have the choice to spend time inside or outside.

The updated exhibit will teach visitors about the ecology, history, reproduction, conservation and care of giant pandas. (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth November 26, 2018 at 12:15 pm 0


courtesy Friends of the National Zoo

From Friends of the National Zoo:

“Visit the Smithsonian’s National Zoo for its annual holiday lights festival, ZooLights, powered by Pepco. ZooLights is a free event, and this year half-a-million environmentally friendly LED lights will illuminate the Zoo for 37 nights–from Nov. 23 through Jan. 1, 2019 from 5 to 9 p.m.

Guests can look forward to some new eye candy at Gingerbread Village, a magical area of frosted cookies and lollipops, giant gingerbread people cut-outs and a gingerbread throne perfect for friend-and-family photos. Visitors also can pause outside the Elephant Community Center to see a dazzling laser-light show, sponsored by Pepco, or board the Smithsonian’s National Zoo Choo-Choo, sponsored by Metro by T-Mobile, for a journey around the Kids’ Farm. (more…)

by Prince Of Petworth August 23, 2018 at 10:25 am 0


Photo Credit: Roshan Patel/Smithsonian’s National Zoo

From the National Zoo:

“Giant panda Bei Bei (BAY-BAY) celebrated his third birthday Aug. 22 with an ice cake made from frozen, diluted fruit juices and decorated with apples, pears, sweet potatoes, carrots, sugar cane and bamboo.

Now weighing in at almost 215 pounds, Bei Bei has been taking full advantage of his summer (more…)

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