Hike the American Trail

The recently opened American Trail at the National Zoo showcases species that are treasures of North American wildlife, most of which have rebounded after facing severe threats. Conservation efforts—including those made by the Zoo—have helped their populations recover and thrive.

Secretary Clough recently toured American Trail and had the opportunity to meet a a distinguished resident.

“Selkie is a wonderful grey seal who actually was a Navy Seal in her younger days  (she worked undersea for the Seals),” he said. “She is blind but still a wonder. She loved it when I touched her whiskers and then when I touched her nose, she snorted in appreciation—it’s a seal thing it seems. I would have loved to get a picture with the two new grey wolves, but they did not let me in their cage!”

Come visit California sea lions—including the pup born in June 2011—gray sealsbald eaglesgray wolvesravensbeaversriver ottersbrown pelicans, and merganser ducks, and gain a greater appreciation of the wildlife that thrives where land and water meet, and of the delicate balance that is our responsibility to maintain.

Smithsonian Secretary Wayne Clough and Selkie. (Photo by Dennis Kelly)

Posted: 10 October 2012
About the Author:

The Torch relies on contributions from the entire Smithsonian community.