Some original material reprinted by Pandas International's Newsletter is used without editing for accepted English usage.

End of Year Note from the Director

The Holidays provide the perfect time to look back on the past year. Here at Pandas International, we have many things to be thankful for but most important, we thank YOU, our supporters. We are extremely grateful for the generous individuals and companies like you who help provide for the Giant Pandas.

With your support we have been able to provide critical vaccines, medicines, veterinarian supplies and begin the long term project of replanting bamboo. We have also endeavored to educate the general population, specifically children, about the endangered Giant Pandas' perilous status.

Many of you have adopted a panda. As you know, those fees go directly for the care of our favorite black and white bears. What better way to celebrate the Holidays than by adopting a panda for that special person in your life.

So give those loved ones in your life a Holiday Hug and accept our sincere Thank You for your support. We greatly appreciate all of You!


Suzanne Braden


Panda News
Tracking Giant Pandas in Foping Nature Reserve
By Ron Swaisgood of San Diego Zoo
November 1, 2011

It’s morning, and I’m happy to see blue sky and feel the warm sun. I’m back in China’s Foping Nature Reserve. I’ve been coming here since 2006, and it feels a little bit like a second home for me. Anytime I put on a pair of Vibram-sole boots and go out exploring in the name of research it feels like home. This is why I took on this line of work—not all those emails and meetings waiting for me back in San Diego. John Muir once said, “Going to the woods is coming home.” I’m with you, John. Looking up at the mist-shrouded mountains and reveling in the grandeur, I feel a bit like I’m channeling Muir.

Giant Pandas to Arrive in Edinburgh in One Week
Photos courtesy of Chris Ison

Yang Guang

Tian Tian

Tian Tian and Yang Guang are expected to arrive in Scotland’s Capital by the end of the week.  They will be the first pair of Giant Pandas to live in the United Kingdom in 17 years and have become a symbol of Scotland’s relationship with China.  The two Giant Pandas were originally expected to arrive in August of this past year, but several delays in their enclosure pushed back the arrival date. If the Giant Pandas do arrive by the end of the week, there is a good possibility the public will be able to view them as an early Christmas gift.

Annual Conference of the Chinese Committee of Breeding Techniques for Giant Pandas 2011
The 21st Annual Conference of the Chinese Committee of Breeding Techniques for Giant Pandas was successfully held in Changsha, Hunan from November 8-10, 2011.

Over 100 delegates from China and abroad attended. Delegates included government administrative department representatives, associations, giant panda holding institutions, nature reserves, international conservation organizations and universities.
Hu Zhongping (Vice President and Secretary General of the Chinese Association of Zoological Gardens) opened the meeting.

He reviewed the progress of captive giant pandas breeding in 2011, scientific research, international cooperation, and conservation education and infrastructure construction.

The breeding focus was shifted from quantity to quality, with a high priority placed on the quality of the population so the number of newborns was reduced by 1/3 compared with last year. Some females were removed from the breeding population so that they could act as nurturers and teachers in both Chengdu & Wolong.

For the first time since 2004, no panda cub was born outside of China. The panda mothers in Atlanta, Madrid, Shirahama, & Vienna are still fostering cubs and did not take part in the breeding program this year.

Giant Pandas in the Reintroducttion Program at Bifengxia and Wolong
Translation by lovecatbear

Reintroduction pandas

On October 31, 2011, the female panda Fei Fei gave birth to a cub in a semi-wild environment. So far, seven panda cubs in five litters have been born at the CCRCGP this year, most of which will participate in the reintroduction program.

At present, there are 8 pandas (4 pairs of mothers and cubs) in the reintroduction program at Hetaoping base in Wolong. Cao Cao and Tao Tao, who are in the second stage of reintroduction training, have become accustomed to their lives in the semi-wild environment. Tao Tao, the one-year-old cub, basically has the abilities to forage, find water and avoid potential dangers, and a sense of the locale. As part of a comparative study, female pandas Jin Zhu, Xi Xi, Zhang Ka and their cubs that were born this year also started their lives in the semi-wild enclosures at Hetaoping base in Wolong. Jin Zhu gave birth to a cub on July 29 in a semi-wild enclosure and the cub has since lived in the semi-wild environment to avoid contact with humans. Jin Zhu has strong maternal instincts and is very protective of her cub. Both Jin Zhu and her cub are doing well. Xi Xi gave birth to twins in the indoor enclosure. Researchers had been helping Xi Xi learn to take care of both cubs at a time since the birth of the twins, but it turned out to be difficult for her to do so. Recently, Xi Xi and one of the twins have been moved into a semi-wild enclosure and the other twin has been sent back to Bifengxi Panda Base for hand-rearing. Zhang Ka gave birth to female twins on August 21 in a semi-wild enclosure at Bifengxia base near Ya'an. Zhang Ka took care of the older twin while the other twins was hand-raised in the nursery. On October 24 Zhang Ka and the older twin were transferred to Wolong to live in a semi-wild enclosure at Hetaoping base.

Jin Zhu, Xi Xi, and Zhang Ka now live in about a 3,000 square-meter semi-wild enclosure, raising their cubs in an environment imitating their natural habitat. After a period of time, they will be moved, step by step, to larger enclosures, where the environment is more complex and plants are more abundant, until pandas suitable for reintroduction have been chosen after research and evaluations.

From this year on, Wolong has adopted new policies to ensure healthy births and good cub rearing, and are stepping up its efforts in the reintroduction program. As a result, this year, unlike past years, Wolong panda cubs were born either at the Hetaoping reintroduction training base in Wolong or in one of the three semi-wild enclosures at the Bifengxia base near Ya'an. As part of a reintroduction experience at Bifengxia base, Su Lin and Fei Fei are now raising their cubs in the semi-wild enclosures. In all semi-wild enclosures (in Wong (is this Wolong?)or at Bifengxia), panda mothers will raise their cubs in a near-wild environment until the cubs are weaned naturally. According to researchers, this will benefit the healthy development of cubs and improve the quality of the captive panda population.

New Giant Panda Center Opens

A new Giant Panda center opened this past fall at Tianmu Lake near the South Mountain Bamboo Ocean.  Thank you to Annette for the wonderful photos of Ao Yun at his  new home. 

United States Giant Pandas
Celebrated Giant Panda Turns 1
November 3, 2011

Po (courtesy of Zoo Atlanta)

Po, Zoo Atlanta’s youngest Giant Panda, celebrated his 1st birthday on November 3. Po’s caretakers helped Po to celebrate by creating a fruit filled ice cake along with a variety of other gifts.  Before Po could open his own gifts and enjoy his cake, his mother, Lun Lun, tasted the cake first and unwrapped Po’s presents.  Po didn’t seem to mind as he carried on his toddler antics until Lun Lun decided she was done with Po’s presents and cake.

The Three Pandas: Developers Who Connect with a Social Cause
By Moms with Apps
November 20, 2011

Three Pandas

When See Here Studios started production on our storybook app “The Three Pandas,” we knew that we wished to donate a portion of the proceeds to a panda conservation organization. It seemed like a natural thing to do, and we also hoped to create marketing and educational tie-ins that would raise awareness of both our company and the cause of the Giant Panda. The rest of this blog post will discuss the process of turning this idea into a reality.

Giant Panda Quilt Owner Gives Thanks

Diana Sutton

Hi Suzanne and all at PI,

I am the proud owner of the beautiful panda photo quilt!!  Thank you so very much.  It is just gorgeous.  I never dreamed when I emailed my photo of Yun Zi to you for the contest that I would actually in the end be the winner of the quilt!!  To think of all the panda cubs and all the photographers whose names I recognize, that I have that quilt is just awesome.  I was so amazed when I opened the box.  Any photo of the quilt simply doesn't do it justice.  I will be bringing it with me to the 3rd Annual Panda Convention in San Diego next March so many can see it in person.  I would LOVE to meet all the photographers and have them sign my quilt someday.

Thank you for being there for our giant pandas!!

Diana Sutton

Panda Protectors

Mieke's 8th Birthday Party

Celebrating Pearl's 2nd Birthday

Guests of Pearl's 2nd Birthday
Panda Videos and Pictures
Counting China's Wild Pandas
Check out our own Suzanne Braden
featured in the nursery in Wolong
back in 2008

Rose Richards, a Pandas International member, celebrates Levy’s wedding at Bifengxia. Levy is part of the Panda Club at Bifengxia.

Suzanne Braden receives an award for Pandas International at the Bifengxia Panda Reserve in September.

Tai Shan

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