Do you know the history of the zoo? It wasn’t always the way it is today!
Zoo is actually short for Zoological Garden, and is mostly used to refer to the modern concept of a zoo. Prior to this the term menagerie was used, coming from a long history reaching back all the way to the ancient world. The oldest collection of this sort was found during an archeological dig in Hierakonpolis Egypt in 2009. The animals they had there included an impressive array of hippos, elephants, baboons, wildcats, and hartebeests. Read the full history of the zoo here!
Did you know that female elephants stick together. The older ones, called “aunties,” teach the younger ones how to be good moms?
What about these fun facts?
The sand cat, which lives in the desert in Africa and Asia, has furry paws so that it leaves no footprints in the sand.
The cheetah, which lives in many countries in Africa, can run faster than 60 miles per hour, which is about as fast as your parents drive the car on a major highway. But it can maintain that speed for only about 20 seconds. Then it has to rest.
Because apes in the wild spend about six hours a day looking for food, zookeepers hide the apes’ food.
Check out some more fun facts about some of the animals in the National Zoo here!
Thanks for listening!
– Lilly and Hannah