Cao Cao and Tao Tao were released into the 3rd and final phase of training in May of 2012. This was a key stage for releasing Tao Tao into the wild. Accompanied by his mother, both Pandas were moved to a 240,000-square-meter third stage training enclosure located in an area about 2,000 meters above sea level in a mountainous forest. The forest vegetation and geographical features are similar to those of the second stage training base. Along with a very large semi-wild enclosure the researchers also included recordings of other wild animals which live in the same environment. These recordings were crucial in teaching Tao Tao to avoid other animals which could cause him harm.