One question we frequently get, especially regarding the explore cams, is why are the Pandas constantly being moved around from enclosure to enclosure.
The main reasons for moving the Pandas relates to the breeding program and the enrichment program. For the breeding program, Pandas are moved next to a potential mate so they can begin to get the scent of one another, prior to mating. CCRCGP is trying to encourage natural mating as much as possible. If they are going to try natural mating they are moved off exhibit preceding the period for mating. After mating the female will most likely be moved to the new breeding center, where she and the cub will stay for approximately 2 years.
If the new breeding center is not full of females, a few of the young males just ready to mate are moved in amongst the females so they can learn from the scents and vocalizations of the females, in order to hopefully get them ready to mate naturally in the future.
Pandas are also moved if they are not feeling well or having any sort of medical problems.
For the enrichment program, recently staff has also begun moving pandas in order to enrich the panda naturally. In the wild Pandas roam over large areas in the wild and are constantly on the lookout for new dens and good bamboo. Moving a Panda to a new enclosure, with new smells and enrichment features, helps to stimulate them. So like playing musical chairs, moving around and seeing new sights can be fun.