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Can you name all five great apes? What's the difference between an ape and a monkey? Why do white-cheeked gibbons change color as they age? And what does all of this have to do with Drupal?

The answer to the last question is -- well, nothing really, except that my husband incanus and I used to live in DC, I used to volunteer at the National Zoo, and bonniebogle has asked me to talk a bit about the zoo in case you'd like to make it part of your trip to our nation's capital next week.

And to answer the other questions, you'll just have to join me on a non-official special zoo tour. The original idea behind this was to give Drupaler significant others who aren't attending the conference something to do. The date isn't set in stone yet, but if it's something you'd be interested in, leave a comment on the forum post and we'll try to nail it down in the next week.

One of the best things about the zoo, as well as nearly every museum in DC, is that it's completely free! That's right, you just walk right in the front door, plus you can visit DC's museums as many times as you like during your stay.

The other thing that's great about the zoo right now is that they have a new baby gorilla! According to the zoo's website:

The gorilla birth is significant for the Zoo. Western lowland gorillas, which are native to tropical forests of West and Central Africa, are listed as critically endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, primarily due to habitat loss and fragmentation and poaching. The Zoo participates in the Species Survival Plan for gorillas, in which North American zoos collaborate to encourage the development of a self-sustaining zoo gorilla population that is both genetically diverse and demographically stable, helping to ensure the survival of this endangered species.

Of course, you are free to check out the rest of the zoo, which is a beautiful walking park in the midst of DC's Rock Creek Park, and has many other animals besides the primates, such as the Giant Pandas in the zoo's recently renovated Asia Trail.

The easiest and most direct way to get to the zoo from the Convention Center is to walk south a few blocks on 7th Street to the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metro stop (right next to Chinatown's unmistakable Friendship Archway), get on the Metro Red Line towards Shady Grove, and get off at the Cleveland Park stop (the fifth stop). You will actually pass the Woodley Park-Zoo/Adams Morgan stop just before that, but the zoo is about equidistant between the two stops and walking from Cleveland Park is slightly downhill. Walk south on Connecticut Avenue for about five minutes and you'll find the zoo's main entrance on the left side of the street.

Hope to see you there and again, if you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment on the forum post.