WAMU 88.5 : News

On Earth Day, National Zoo Preaches And Practices Conservation

Play associated audio
Frank Clements, park manager at the National Zoo, sats the Zoo uses the rain barrels to prevent runoff into Rock Creek and then recycles the water for its gardens.
Jessica Gould
Frank Clements, park manager at the National Zoo, sats the Zoo uses the rain barrels to prevent runoff into Rock Creek and then recycles the water for its gardens.

Zoo curator Teresa Vetick is teaching children how to make planter pots out of old newspapers. But Zoo director Dennis Kelly says that's only one of the earth-friendly activities happening at the Zoo these days. He says the Zoo is installing rain barrels and building new, pervious surfaces.

"It's a great way to prevent the runoff and picking up pollutants that go into Rock Creek," he says.

The Zoo is even beginning to treat and recycle the water animals use in their swimming pools.

"It's hard to put a swimming diaper on an elephant or seals and sea lions but yet that water is perfectly clean because of how we're taking care of it," he says.

Kelly says the goal is to make the zoo a model of conservation.

"We want people to think about the connections they made, extinctions that happened in the past, extinctions going on today, and small changes you can make, from a rain barrel to the food choices you make have an impact," he says. "Making a small change can make a difference."

Five-year-old Natalie Peterson says she knows just what to do.

"I'm going to plant a sunflower seed," she says.

And then, she says, it's going to grow.

NPR

National Museum of African American History Opens Its Doors

More than 100 years after it was originally proposed, the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture is opening its doors in Washington, D.C.
NPR

While Everyone Was Partying At Woodstock, I Was Stuck At Schrafft's

The chain restaurant that catered to women helped redefine how Americans eat, according to a new book. For NPR's Lynn Neary, it also defined how she did and didn't fit with the counterculture.
NPR

Hillary Clinton's Plan For America's Students

In advance of the first debate, a rundown of the Democratic presidential candidate's positions.
NPR

Russian Hackers Doxxed Me. What Should I Do About It?

NPR's David Welna was recently hacked by a pro-Kremlin website when he applied for press credentials in Ukraine. He's hardly alone. But it's an issue the U.S. government is reluctant to discuss.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.