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June 19, 2013 | By Tony Perry
San Diego Zoo animal keepers are searching for a rare painted stork that flew away from the zoo's Safari Park on Monday. The year-old bird, from a species native to Asia, was out flying Monday and instead of returning, it flew away, maybe carried away by a thermal wind, officials said. The bird is full grown but still inexperienced at flying. The stork was in training to be part of a free flight bird program at the park. Birders and wildlife officials have been alerted to be on the lookout.
June 17, 2013 | By Christie DZurilla
Pauley Perrette was honored Saturday night by the Greater Los Angeles Zoo Assn. as part of its 43rd annual Beastly Ball fundraiser among the animals, under the stars. The "NCIS" star, pictured above with a hedgehog that's even cuter than her costar Mark Harmon, did a meet-and-greet at the evening's pre-party soiree before being honored with the Tom Mankiewicz Leadership Award.  Perrette, affiliated with myriad nonprofits including Habitat for Humanity, the NOH8 Campaign and, helped create the "Meet the Keepers” video presentation now playing at the Elephants of Asia exhibit, in addition to other work for the zoo. She tweeted pics from the event, including one of her with a snake and another with longtime L.A. Zoo supporter Betty White.
June 6, 2013 | By Kate Mather
At first, Deputy Michael Rust didn't believe the radio call . A former Los Angeles police officer had spotted two women standing at a van parked near a Lancaster intersection Tuesday morning, Rust said. One reportedly was holding a 4-foot long alligator. Worried the women would "abandon the beast in the desert" -- residents say abandoned dogs are a problem in the area -- the man called authorities, the L.A. County Sheriff's Department said. "When I heard it on the radio, I'm thinking, 'Yeah, an alligator.
May 27, 2013 | By Terry Gardner
The San Francisco Zoo's 3-month-old Sumatran tiger cub finally has a name: Jillian.  Born Feb. 10, the cub now eats solid food and weighs almost 30 pounds. On May 11, at Zoofest, the nonprofit zoo's annual fundraiser, comedian Robin Williams assisted in auctioning off naming rights to the cub. Literary agent Jillian Manus won the naming rights to the cub with a $47,000 donation to the zoo.  “I was going to donate a certain amount of money anyway and my kids started texting me: 'Get the baby tiger,'” says Jillian Manus.
May 14, 2013 | By Jason La
J. Michael Elliott photographed these zebras at the Los Angeles Zoo on April 14. "On this particular day, this one zebra was unusually animated," said Elliott, a frequent visitor to the zoo. "I was excited by the dramatic lighting, interesting pose and her unique expressions, so I quickly took several photos. This one is my favorite. I'm not sure what prompted these expressions, but to me it looked like she was laughing at her own joke. " Elliott used a Canon EOS 7D. Each week, we're featuring photos of Southern California submitted by readers.
May 3, 2013 | By Devin Kelly
From the standpoint of sun-scorched Southern California, the message splashed across the website of a Washington state private school almost looked like a joke.  “SCHOOL CANCELLED DUE TO GREAT WEATHER! WAHOOO!” In rainy, cloudy Bellingham, about two hours north of Seattle, students and teachers so rarely see a full day of sunshine that Bob Sampson, the principal of Bellingham Christian School, declared Friday a “sun day” and gave students the day off to celebrate.  “It's just a day to create some anticipation, some joy,” said Sampson, who picked up the phone at the school.
May 3, 2013 | By Jason Wells
This Sofie is no teething toy. The Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens on Thursday announced the successful birth of a female giraffe named Sofie, a close riff on the wildly popular Sophie baby teething toy in the likeness of a giraffe. The zoo's Sofie, however, is a bit larger, weighing in at 135 pounds and standing 6 feet tall. She was named by the great granddaughter of zoo donor Robert McMillan, according to an announcement issued on Thursday. Sofie, born on April 22, is the first calf for the zoo's Masai giraffe, Hafina.
April 20, 2013 | By Barbara Demick, Los Angeles Times
BEIJING - On a subway car in Shanghai, commotion breaks out when someone spots a live chicken poking its head out of a bag tucked under one of the seats. On a highway in Zhejiang province, a motorist is so panicked by bird droppings landing on her windshield that she stops the car and calls traffic police for help. Internet photos of dead sparrows on a Nanjing sidewalk are ordered removed by police, fearing they might go viral. The fowl phobia gripping China is the result of a new strain of avian flu that has led to 18 deaths and 95 diagnosed illnesses over the last month.
April 12, 2013 | By Terry Gardner
An 8-week-old female Sumatran tiger cub makes her debut Friday (today) at the San Francisco Zoo .  Visitors are encouraged to “walk softly” (without a big stick) because the cub might hide if she hears a loud noise.  The cub, born Feb. 10, now weighs almost 14 pounds. Her birth and 9 1/2-year-old Leanne's pregnancy was closely watched . The cub's naming rights will be auctioned at a May 11 zoo fundraiser. I asked Corinne MacDonald, the zoo's curator of carnivores and primates, whether Leanne was different with her girl cub. Leanne had three male cubs in 2008.
March 30, 2013 | By Paloma Esquivel
They closely monitored her hormone levels, watched her behavior to make sure the time was right and set up a quiet night with a mate. But it didn't do the trick. So on Saturday, the Smithsonian's National Zoo performed an artificial insemination on giant panda Mei Xiang. There is only a short window of opportunity for a giant panda to breed, so scientists at the National Zoo have been trying to make the most of it. When putting Mei Xiang and male Tian Tian together overnight didn't result in breeding, the scientists decided to  inseminate Mei Xiang with sperm collected from Tian Tian.
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