Friday, August 27, 2010

V I Panda

Probably the most significant event in the zoo world over the past week was the birth of the Panda in Vienna Zoo. It was significant not because it was a Panda but because this was a natural birth and the mother was rearing it herself.

Yang Yang the mother Panda in Schoenbrunn Zoo gave birth to her cub on the morning of Monday 23rd August.

In the photo above you can just make out the tiny baby panda in the mouth of its mother
(AP Photo/Schoenbrunn Zoo, Handout)

This is the second live birth cub for Yang Yang and the second time for natural care and rearing. It shows that it can be done. Mother knows best. It is the way to go.

The births of Pandas in captivity is not an especially rare event. Anyone who has visited the collections in China in Chengdu and other places will be surprised by their abundance. There are over 200 Giant Pandas in captivity and along with around 1,600 animals in the wild they are not an especially rare animal. There are many species which are much rarer.

Within China the Panda will rarely get the chance to rear their own young, let alone mate. The Panda Policy appears to be be almost to factory farm.

The above photo shows a successful panda breeding year at Wolong Breeding Center

and here in Chengdu

I do hope that at some point that the policy in China will change and that they will let the Pandas get on with it and do their own thing.

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