The National Zoo is home to 2,000 individual animals of nearly 400 different species. Our best known residents are our giant pandas, but great apes, big cats, Asian elephants, birds, amphibians, reptiles, insects, aquatic animals, small mammals, and many others can be found at the Zoo. You can take a virtual visit to the Zoo any day of the week by tuning into our live web cams, which feature many of the Zoo’s animals, including Amazon river fish, Asian elephants, and pandas.
Animal Diversity Web (ADW) is an online database of animal natural history, distribution, classification, and conservation biology at the University of Michigan. Animal Diversity Web has thousands of species accounts about individual animal species. These may include text, pictures of living animals, photographs and movies of specimens, and/or recordings of sounds. (Students write the text of these accounts and we cannot guarantee their accuracy.) It also has descriptions of levels of organization above the species level, especially phyla, classes, and in some cases, orders and families. Hundreds of hyperlinked pages and images illustrate the traits and general biology of these groups. (Professional biologists prepare this part.)
The Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) was established by governments in 2001 to encourage free and open access to biodiversity data, via the Internet. Through a global network of countries and organizations, GBIF promotes and facilitates the mobilization, access, discovery and use of information about the occurrence of organisms over time and across the planet.
Journey North engages students in a global study of wildlife migration and seasonal change. K-12 students share their own field observations with classmates across North America. They track the coming of spring through the migration patterns of monarch butterflies, robins, hummingbirds, whooping cranes, gray whales, bald eagles— and other birds and mammals; the budding of plants; changing sunlight; and other natural events. Find migration maps, pictures, standards-based lesson plans, activities and information to help students make local observations and fit them into a global context. Widely considered a best-practices model for education, Journey North is the nation's premiere "citizen science" project for children. The general public is welcome to participate.
Species Explorer lets you record all your observations of wildlife, whether you're at home, or on a distant hike, using a combination of web and mobile technology. Our focus is not on distant or exotic species–the Amazonian rainforest or the Arctic tundra–but the "everyday" species that we see in our local environment. Whether it is the abandoned lot at the end of our street, the local park, or a nearby wildlife refuge, there is a rich, exciting diversity of plants and animals waiting to be discovered.