Mei Sheng’s New Exhibit

Can you spot Mei Sheng?

Can you spot Mei Sheng?

Jennifer Keating, a research scientist for San Diego Zoo Conservation Research, is in China conducting research on giant pandas. She is kind enough to include updates on the two pandas born at the Zoo now living in China, Hua Mei and Mei Sheng. Read her previous blog, Hua Mei: Quite the Charmer.

Ya’an has a reputation for being the rainiest city in China. Even though I have only been here a short time, I am willing to say that this reputation is very true! The Bifengxia panda base is just up the mountainside from Ya’an and tends to get more rain than Ya’an. To everyone’s surprise, the sun came out a few days ago, and it happened to coincide with Mei Sheng getting moved to his new exhibit.

There have been massive amounts of construction all over the panda base, and for those of you that have visited Bifengxia, they have built six beautiful, large enclosures up on Leopard Mountain. Mei Sheng was extremely happy to explore his new exhibit. There are tons of tall trees for him to climb and sleep in. On the mornings I have visited Mei Sheng, I have found his keeper outside the exhibit trying to call him down from the tree he has spent the night in.

One of the projects I have been working on here in China involves Mei Sheng. The goal of the project has been to collect audio recordings of the male giant panda bleat, along with fecal samples from that day. We will then look at the levels of testosterone in the fecal samples and see if there is a correlation with the bleat recorded on that day. Mei Sheng is the youngest male in the study, helping to provide a wide range of ages.

The data collection for this project has been very successful, and as of this morning I have everything I need to bring back to the U.S. for analysis.

0 Responses to Mei Sheng’s New Exhibit

  1. Jennifer–

    Thanks for the Mei Sheng news. Would Su Lin or Bai Yun recognize Mei Sheng’s bleat?

  2. thats our boy! sounds like rain is a good thing what with sheng’s penchant for the rain dance.

  3. Jennifer, thanks so much on this update. I had the honor of seeing both Mei Sheng and Hua Mei last September! Bifengxia is such an amazing place, and I was so happy to see them, along with Hua Mei’s cubs. As for the rain, what an understatement. I think we saw the sun for 5 minutes. But sun or rain, both Ya’an and Bifengxia are magical.

    I’m looking forward to hearing more about your study – everything about pandas fascinates me.

  4. That’s our boy indeed!! Thank you so much for the update — it sounds like he has a really nice exhibit and from the picture, big beautiful trees to climb. Gosh – that’s a big tree — he looks so tiny up there! He must be really happy — which makes me happy. Thanks again for the updates — he really tugs at my heart — being our only baby boy — so far from home!

  5. So good to see you, Mei Sheng!

  6. Thanks for sharing news of Mei Sheng. Your research sounds really exciting and interesting. I hope someday we’ll get to read about what conclusions you came up with.

    That’s a great picture of Mei Sheng. It takes my breath away when I see photos of pandas in tall trees. It looks so spectacular yet so natural at the same time.

  7. Thanks Jennifer for all the great news on mei sheng, our handsome young man. Would love to go to china with you ! Did you get to hold their baby pandas like Samantha Brown did on the travel channel? What was hua mei doing ? Thanks again!

  8. Oh my, Mei Sheng is still climbing them trees as if he’s a cub! What a super panda boy! Thanks for the Mei Sheng update and looking forward to reading more updates on Mei Sheng. He is still my fav panda of all time! Love the boy!

  9. Jennifer – thanks for taking the time for another update on “Our Mei Sheng” Looks like “our tree climber champ” hasn’t missed a beat since returning to his “homeland” —- I can “bearly” see our dear Mei HIGH up in the branches…can see how he managed to escape from his enclosure at Wolong Hope Mei was able to help your research.

  10. Thank you so much for updating us on Mei Sheng! We sure do miss seeing him on the San Diego Zoo pandacam and it’s so nice to hear how that he is doing well in China.

  11. Thanks so much for keeping us posted on our boy Mei Sheng. Having followed him since his birth and SDZ, I’m happy to see he’s doing well in his home country. It will a joyous day when he becomes a daddy.

    Thanks again.

  12. Tall trees and rain! I’m sure Mei Sheng is very happy.

  13. lol omg my roommate was like why are you excited..Thanks for the update..I am so happy his happy..one of these days he will be a proud papa..so does every panda has a keeper? since Mei is an so called an adult they the keepers are actually up close and personal with these pandas?

  14. When I volunteered in Bifengxia in August 2008, Mei Sheng was usually outside in one of the trees in his outdoor yard in the Research Centre. Whenever anyone passed by, we would call out to him to come down, but did he listen? What do you think?

  15. Thanks for the update! It’s great to see Mei Shung, healthy and happy!

  16. That is simply wonderful news about Mei Sheng! I didn’t know him, but I feel I’m getting to know him a bit from the comments of veteran pandafanatics. It looks as though he now has a home better than even SDZ could give him. And he has lovely ladies to woo and win! Perhaps that eases the sting of losing our friends when they go to China. Mei Sheng is happy.

    Hey! Queen Bai has a little ice cake! It isn’t her birthday. What’s the occasion? Are we trying to get her in a cheerful mood, perhaps upping those estrogen levels? Whatever the reason, Bai has earned her cake!

  17. Wow..you guys weren’t kidding when you said he liked to climb high!! I’m so happy he has a new area with lots of big trees to play in! Would be nice to see a close up shot of him over there *hint* *hint*.

  18. How wonderful that Mei Sheng is happy in his surroundings, with lots of tall trees in which to defy his keepers wishes! 😀 He will eventually sire lots of beautiful babies.

  19. THANK YOU JENNIFER!!!! for a fabulous update on “our” handsome “prince” Mei Sheng! He sure loves TALL trees and we know from his past escapades at SDZ that he also LOVES the rain. So, it sounds like he has the best of both worlds in his new exhibit. Since he got into “trouble” because of his great climbing skills at Wolong, it is great that they designed new spaces for him to do “what comes naturally” for him. I hope he decides to come down when he is introduced to his “brides.” Otherwise it will not be a natural mating like his pappa has taught him. Have they started putting him with any females yet? Due to the earthquake last year they decided to wait until he was older this year. It will be very interesting to see what his reaction is to the females since the only contact he has had was through the mesh in the howdy gate with his sister Su Lin. I presume that they are keeping records on the mating behavior and reactions of the pandas that were born outside of China and were kept with their mothers longer. The twin brothers had the companionship of each other, whereas he and Hua Mei were solo. Obviously Hua Mei’s lack of companionship of pandas her age, as in the Wolong Panda Kindergarten, has not inhibited her ability to produce healthy cubs, 6 in three pregnancies. We look forward to hearing and seeing if Mei Sheng’s breeding ability is likewise outstanding.

  20. So glad to hear news of Mei. It was so hard to see him leave the U.S. This was a wonderful week for me as I went to ZA and saw Xi Lan. He is just beautiful as are all the pandas. Watched Xi and Lun for hours. In the morning there was alot of panda play. No matter how many times Lun pulled him down from something or batted him away, he always rushed right back for more. It was just such a thrill to watch them in person. Of course I always spent some time watching Mei and Yang. They are also great. Since I was away for three days, I missed seeing the great SD pandas but will get back to watching right away. Hope ZZ is ok as I still worry about her being alone.

  21. Thanks so much for the much-anticipated Mei Sheng update! I’m grinning from ear to ear to hear of his new tall trees. I know he loves to climb and be on top of the world. And I know he must be “singing” in the rain there, so hopefully you will have lots of recordings to analyze. I’m so proud of “our” pandas. And I can’t wait to see more grandcubs, especially the first one(s) with Sheng as Daddy.

  22. yes, i find mei sheng, from this angle, he is like a cute baby. Thanks for the update.

  23. Margaret #19- What kind of trouble did Mei Sheng get into at Wolong?

  24. I’m so glad Mei Sheng is happy, and in his element in the trees and the rain!

    Can anyone tell me who Zhen Zhen was desperately trying to get to on the other side of the mesh today (Sunday) at around midday? I could see another panda on the other side and ZZ was going mental trying to get to them.

  25. OK, maybe I’m the one going mental! I’m not sure if there is another panda on the other side of ZZ’s mesh fence. Maybe it was a trick of the light.

  26. Jennifer – I could not wait for your update on Mei Sheng and it certainly brought wonderful news! Even though he is so high up your can barely make him out, I know he has that famous ‘smile’ on his face. It’s great to know he is in such a wonderful place and so well taken care of. The best news of all will be hearing that he has passed on his treasured genes to another generation!!!

  27. Thank You Jennifer for the update and the photo of Mei Sheng peering down from his very high tree!!! This morning in Southern California, we received rain and some brisk wind. Su Lin put on a show high in a tree that was a reminder: Like Brother/Like Sister :) Next Little sister Zhen showed off her climbing skills by climbing the walls of her patio! Great camera work Meerkats!!! It tickles me no end to watch the climbing skills of the children of Bai and Gao. Especially when I get to watch Gao sound asleep on the ground and Bai sleeping on her hut. Figure the climbing ‘DNA’ comes from Bai :)

  28. It’s so nice to hear and see Mei Sheng in his favorite place. Sure do miss him, hope he’ll be a daddy one day soon.

  29. Hi Jennifer – Many thanks for taking the time out of your busy schedule to send us news about our beautiful Mei Sheng. We all miss him very much.

    I read in the April issue of ZOONOOZ that you are also working on a different type of hearing study with the pandas. It would really be interesting to hear about the results of your studies upon your return to the U.S. Also in the ZOONOOZ article, there is a photo of you sharing a moment with a smiling panda. You both look very happy. What is the happy panda’s name?

    In the meantime, I hope the sunny weather continues, if not, then try to stay dry. :-)

  30. Jennifer, thank you so much for the update on our boy, He’s seems like he is happy and that’s all that matters, no matter how far from home he is we all still miss him alot. Just seeing him up in the trees brings back memories and of course the tears. Some day maybe we will get to see a couple of his babies.

  31. Great news about Mei Sheng. He is going to make some great cubs. The Memphis Zoo has posted Day 2, clip 3 of Ya Ya’s aritificial insemination, if anybody’s interested. Fascinating stuff and hopefully this will be successful. Just imagine — the possibility of 3 cubs this year. :)

  32. Judy in Texas #23 If you do a search on “mei sheng wolong escape” you can find more info on flickr from kjdrill. Basically, Mei Sheng was kept alone in an enclosure and decided to go and play with his neighbors by climbing over and a fight with the other cubs ensued. It happened about a year ago, after that he was moved to Bifengxia panda base in Ya’an.

  33. changing the subject away from Mei Sheng and how great it is to hear some news about him and see him so high up in a tree….Zhen is on pandacam and i’m feeling a bit claustrophobic for her…she needs some tall trees to climb, too. SDZ, any plans to expand the panda canyon? i know she is a little bear but the way she is pacing and the limited height she has…make me feel bad for the baby…:-(

  34. Does little Miss ZZ get to go out into the other back enclosure soon? I’m also feeling sort of sad for her, being in that little patio with cyclone fencing all around and no trees to climb and grass to feel under her little paws…in spite of how well she is cared for and attended to, the nice climbing structure she has in there, etc. She loves to climb! I know there’s another area out back, maybe it’s being improved or worked on right now and she will get to be out there soon?
    Also wonder…do the pandas have mirrors ??

  35. Jersey #33 I was thinking the same thing. Since Bai and Gao were back out front, I was hoping to see ZZ get her yard back where she had a small tree, if only for a little while. It is so sad to see her gazing through the mesh covering her enclosure. I know there is a lot going on that we don’t know about and understand though.

  36. Thanks for the reminder #31 Jane…I’d checked the MZ site this morning since I’ve been waiting for Part 3 but it hadn’t been posted yet. The videos have been really interesting, although I always find it a tiny bit hard to see any of the pandas under anesthesia. They look so vulnerable but are obviously so well taken care of and treated so tenderly that I know they are fine. I thought it was sweet the way the woman held Ya Ya’s paw. And I loved the closeup of Ya Ya’s hind foot and claws.

    I saw Gao investigating an ice cake over the weekend. I’m glad he got to take part in the Bear Bonanza activities. Sometimes I wonder if he thinks “Hmmm, I never saw one of these frozen things out in the wild.” Su Lin was enjoying the weekend and I was able to take a screenshot of her that wound up looking like she was doing a cartwheel. I think she’s afflicted with the same spring fever strain that’s hit Tai Shan, as he again put on the Tai Shan Panda Follies today. When he hurls himself off the logs and starts rolling sideways down the slope with puffs of dirt flying behind him, I laugh ’til I cry. So cute. I wish it could last forever… :(

  37. Awwww, love that boy’s face — even WAY up in the tree. Thank you, Jennifer, for the update. Thank you, thank you. And lucky you. Give him love from us.

    What a treat to be able to see Xi Lan now. The little toady slept a lot today.

    I love how we all are such worriers over our pandas. We all want to be schmoozers, and bring ZZ home to our back yards where we have lots of trees. I’ll volunteer to be first.

  38. To those concerned about Zhen,

    Zhen has access to a large, wooded area during the day (classroom 2), an area that was Bai Yun’s exhibit space when she arrived in 1996. It’s even bigger than the area Bai Yun is currently on exhibit in. However, Zhen is given the choice to remain there or travel “backstage” to her bedrooms, at her whim. Most of the day, when given the choice, she chooses to be in the areas closest to her keepers.

    Young pandas of her age typically do seem to like to be in areas near the keepers or other people. Su Lin and Mei Sheng before her showed the same proclivity. We are following the same management strategies that have worked so well for us in the past, with some added fine tuning we pick up with each panda born here. Please know that we are doing our very best for Zhen, and part of that means respecting her wishes and allowing her to have some time behind the scenes… if that is what makes her happy. There is a lot that does not translate via Panda Cam, and it seems some have interpreted her time in the garden room or bedroom as undesirable, but I would think Zhen would disagree because she is choosing to be there herself.

  39. Wowie!! It looks like Miss ZZ has the classroom with all the yard and the trees and all that room to run around!

  40. Thanks, Suzanne #38 for telling us about ZZ’s room to move, as it were. It seems that lately the only times we’ve seen her have been when she was in her little back yard, seemingly trying to burst through the ceiling. Please forgive us for being such mother hens (or pandas)–our only contact with “our” baby girl is through pandacam. We know you all take wonderful care of the pandas–thanks again for the backstage info!

  41. Thank you Suzanne for the reassurance, silly us…we knew you had it covered, we just aren’t yet used to ‘our’ little girl being on her own after those 18 months of intensive mama time. Of course she would choose to be nearer you all, the loving humans she’s known all her life! Thanks for helping us with this, we truly only get a slice of life at the panda station with the cams.
    But we are grateful for that slice!

  42. Zhen has been looking very content this past week in her back room with her pile of “boo”. Especially this morning, where she laying back in the morning sunshine and chomping down her “boo”. She’s gained so much independence… many thanks to her keepers in the transition.

    Mei Sheng still makes me nervous when he’s way up there in the trees. I still remember how he tried to balance on these little branches at SDZ – that couldn’t hold him as he got bigger. He had a couple falls, but would then shake it off and carry on.

    Thank you Panda Keepers!

  43. Thank you Suzanne for that explanation of ZZ and her area. I can understand why she would want to be near the keeprs, this being her first time away from mom..she probably feels more secure with them around her, after all it’s a whole new world for her now. No doubt as the time goes by she will get used to being independent and feel more comfortable venturing out a little further. I’ve enjoyed watching her this evening, she’s just an adorable little panda.

  44. Suzanne #38, thank you for your explanation about ZZ. I have a question that’s probably been asked and answered many times before, but here it is: why can’t ZZ and Su Lin at some point be allowed access to each other, beyond just the howdy gate? Might the size difference preclude it? Both appear to need more social activity than may be true in the wild. They can’t have as large an area to roam as they would in the wild, and they don’t have to find their own food.

    It’s been breaking my heart that little ZZ may never again have the chance to wrestle and play with another panda. For the first time we have two female sub-adults. A moderator once responded to a question from me, saying that females don’t show much rivalry to each other.

    If they can’t be together, no doubt there’s an excellent reason for it, but I’d very much like to understand that reason. Thank you (or anyone else who can respond).

  45. Suzanne, Thank you so much for taking the time to alleviate the fears of us over-protective pandaholics. We all know that the pandas at SDZ get the very best care and that you all genuinely care about the bears. however, it does ease my worries tremendously to know that ZZ has access to her trees, and that when she is so restless in her enclosed area, she is probably just trying to get the attention of her keepers. This also tells us that the keepers are giving her that extra attention you told us she would get and maybe she is getting a little spoiled!

    Thank you so much for giving us this forum to communicate with each other and with you and for taking our concerns into consideration .

  46. #23 Judy in Texas -our beloved MeiSheng was quite a tree climber & shortly after his arrival back at Wolong he managed to climb out of his enclosure & got into a fight with his neighboring male panda. For his protection the decision was made to move him to the Bifengxia panda base in Ya’an. This whole episode caused quite an uproar here – we had been told MeiSheng would be safe back in China & then we found he had escaped from his enclosure & then after his move we begged for info about him with no luck – so many, many thanks to Jennifer for a wonderful update.

  47. Thanks for the clarification and education Suzanne. Unfortunately our human emotions sometimes get the better of us and we tend to anthropomorphize too much. We forget that wild animals often rest in caves, under trees, etc. to get “away from it all.” Tai Shan is twice as old as ZZ and he usually spends his days sleeping under a fir tree where he is hidden from human view. Since ZZ is schmoozing with keepers more than in the past, and that is now her source of comfort, it makes sense that she wants to be as close to them as possible. Besides it is farther to go to get the yummy extra treats she is getting during this adjustment period. She got a new enrichment opportunity by climbing the chain fencing, which is what I often read about pandas doing in China in their yards. So, maybe she is starting her practice early. Hua Mei has been more in that type of environment so far than Mei Sheng. From the photos I’ve seen of both of them in China, he has been blessed with more open enclosures with lots of trees to climb, as that is what makes him a happy boy. Hua Mei on the other hand seems to be satisfied on the ground and therefore has been in more traditional enclosures. ZZ may strike a balance between the two and spend time in both types of environments. For now she has lots of options, and lots of attention and treats, and is making the best of all of her available choices.

    Thanks keepers and all the panda staff for taking outstanding care of these special animals!!!

  48. Thanks for the much-anticipated update on our boy!

    My fondest memory of Mei Sheng was watching him climbing up and down and around and scurrying in his area. Climbing face down just tickled me. But the very best was when he was in a tree and Kay said, “Mei Sheng, it’s 4:30, time to come down”. And in seconds, he flew down that tree. This was several years ago, but it feels like yesterday.

    Again, thanks for keeping us posted.

    Aloha,
    Noreen.

  49. Phew…i’m glad to be corrected by Suzanne as to Zhen and the space that she has to move around in. That little so and so…i’d like to give her a good wrestle for tugging on my heartstrings. And here it is that she wants company and maybe treats. 😉 Thank you SDZ, you all are the best! We love all our pandas but nothing beats walking thru Panda Canyon! Hey Bai and Gao, where is our number 5 cub?

  50. ZZ just loves her keepers. I think that says it all about how superbly the keepers and staff bring up their Pandas, and the absolute trust they have in the dedicated people who look after them.

  51. Hi, you all! It’s been a few days since I last written to you all, but I’m back with some video news. Memphis Zoo has a video alert—there are 3 videos of Day 2 Parts 1, 2, 3 about Ya Ya and Le Le. They describe their second attempt at natural mating between the 2 pandas, the collection of fresh semen from Le Le, and the 3rd AI procedure done on Ya Ya since December, 2008. With all of that done, they are hopeful for a pregnancy, and they will be watching Ya Ya over the next few months along with vet checks and ultrasounds. After Ya Ya lost her first baby back in 2007, the panda keepers are really keeping their fingers crossed for a much better, successful pregnancy from Ya Ya. Keep your psuedothumbs crossed everybody!
    Been on the pandacams! Saw Su Lin on the SDZ cam, finally got a chance to get on the AZ pandacam and saw little Xi Lan napping on the log structure, and Mei Xiang at DC was just walking around outside.
    Read the update about Mei Sheng, and that picture of Mei up that tree was awesome! How old is Mei Sheng anyway, 5 years old? And he can still climb trees that HIGH?? WOW!!! The acrobatic panda of Bifengxia!! It’s good to know that he is doing very well and very happy in his home. Anything about Hua Mei yet? Love to hear about how she’s been doing in China.

    Well, gonna go and get back on the cams again. Will check back with you later!
    Chari Mercier :)
    St. Pete, FL

  52. I have faith in all the panda keepers. I know they have the training and expertise to take care of the pandas as well as the ability to modify their strategies for whatever contingencies arise. It’s touching to see the pandas’ reliance on and trust in those who care for them. They probably wish they could whip up a big chocolate cake to present to their keepers in appreciation for all that you do for them, much as ice cakes are made to celebrate the pandas! Thank you to the panda staff!

    There’s seldom a day that goes by that I don’t think “Wow, I’m sitting here watching giant pandas LIVE. I can’t believe I get to see them every day.” We’re all so lucky!

  53. I understand that in a Mexico zoo they have a pair of pandas. Could u give us some info abt this? Are they still there? About two or three years ago they showed in TV that they had failed in getting their pandas pregnant. They were showing one of them, behind a glass, in a very small space, and it broke my heart.

  54. Thank you Jennifer for the good news about Mr. SHeng.
    Suzanne, thanks for putting my mind at ease about Ms ZZ.

  55. #53 Amanda – I believe that Mexico still has their pandas. They are in the Chapultepec zoo. You can google “giant panda mexico” – should get you there.

    I was watching the ZA cam at about 1:30 pm Atlanta time – mama Lun and little prince Xi were fast asleep in the teepee room right on the peak of the structure – Xi Lan on the low branch and Lun curled around the branch right above – too funny, and cute!!

    Have seen Bai a lot today. Wish I could see more of ZZ, though. Will have to catch up to her and the other bears later. Also panda lovers, lots and lots of new videos on youtube of Xi-Lan over the last couple of days.

  56. Amanda #53 I believe that Mexico has 2 females. They are the only zoo that owns their pandas and there lies the problem. We cannot give them sperm without the Chinese govt giving permission and that won’t happen.Also because any baby born would belong to China and Mexico won’t let that happen so as they say it’s a stand off. I also believe there would be a money issue.

  57. Thanks Jennifer for your updates on Hua Mei and Mei Sheng. Let’s hope Hua Mei has a successful pregnancy and that Mei Sheng continues to enjoy his new space. That tree is definitely taller than the one he had in his temporary quarters. Continue to enjoy our SDZ bears. I feel so lucky to have “met” them all and to “deliver” greetings between SDZ and Ya’an pandas. What a thrill.

    Thanks to the keepers and narrators for all your care, not only to the pandas but also to us panda-nuts. We appreciate you.

  58. Hi again, everybody! Got on Pandas Live On website last nite, and I ran into a short article with a picture with it about Hua Mei. Jennifer Keating reported that Hua Mei has been in estrus, was introduced to a male panda, and mated with that male panda FOUR TIMES! Hua Mei failed to have a cub last year due to the stress of the May, 2008 earthquake, so they are really hoping that Hua Mei will be able to be pregnant and have a cub or 2 sometime this summer. The article is on the website under the March 18, 2009 list of articles. There are other things on there, such as recent pics and vids of Tai Shan, Xi Lan and Lun Lun, Ya Ya, others. They are funny hilarious pics and vids!
    On the AZ pandacam, watched Xi Lan on the log structure just waking up and moving around while his mom eats some lunch. On the SDZ cam, saw Miss Bai eating her boo with a great close up of her.
    That’s it on any news about pandas. Hope everyone got a chance to get on the Memphis Zoo’s panda blog page to watch their 3 new vids about Ya Ya and Le Le. They are very interesting with some great info.
    Gonna go for now. Will be back later!
    Chari Mercier :)
    St. Pete, FL

  59. Moderator – At 11:52 AM PT, I noticed Gao Gao constantly licking his lips for at least 5 minutes while he was sitting on a log. Did he get his paws on some delicious honey treats?

  60. Chari #58: The story of Hua Mei was already posted here first, there is a link up above if you read the article. Jennifer’s first blog was an update about her.

  61. #55 Pandafan: I got to see Lun and AJ sleeping like you mentioned. But just before the scene you mentioned there was a scene that cracked me up. They were both on the “top” branch and Lun was resting her head ON little Xi Lan. He made a nice pillow until she shifted her weight a bit and must have jabbed him or something because he yawned, stretched out and they did a 2-minute “dance” to get comfortable again. That’s when he ended up on the lower branch and Lun stayed in her same spot on the upper branch.

    Pandas are so much fun to watch! I am soooooooooo thankful for the invention of pandacam.
    #52 Melissa: I agree whole heartedly and I hope you don’t mind that I echo your sentiments…
    There’s seldom a day that goes by that I don’t think “Wow, I’m sitting here watching giant pandas LIVE. I can’t believe I get to see them every day.” We’re all so lucky!
    Thanks once again for all the people who make pandacam possible!
    Here’s hoping for many more happy days of panda watching!!!
    Love, Joy :)

  62. I have not seen ZZ in a couple days. Where is she??????

  63. #55-Barbara – I may be wrong but thought if if a zoo “owned” their pandas -they were free to do as they wished regarding mating & any cubs born would belong to that zoo. That’s why there such sadness & dismay when “our” pandas LingLing & HsingHsing (outright gifts from China in 1972 (?)) died without having a cub live – it was my impression that if they’d had cubs they would belong to us.

  64. Check out the big event affecting worldwide carbon footprint this Saturday, 3/28/09. “Organized by the World Wildlife Fund and supported by a host of powerful names … the rolling electric turnoff will take place from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. local time, beginning in Fiji and following time zones around the globe.” © 2009 msnbc.com

    Maybe the awareness that comes from this event, added to our individual efforts to save energy and preserve our planet will make a significant difference, at least for an hour.

    JoAnne Simerson said in the Polar Bear blogs that if we write about what we are doing, they will provide more frequent updates. So go to the SDZ Polar Bear blogs and write what you are doing so we can continue to get frequent updates about our beloved white bears, and how the romance and breeding season are progressing.

  65. #55 Pandafan and #61 Joy, I saw it too. Xi Lan was sleeping nicely on the top of the teepee for quite a while before Lun Lun decided it was time to reclaim “her” spot. Xi Lan kept looking up at his mother after moving to the lower spot, kind of wondering if that was safe. Even after Xi Lan found a comfy spot a bit higher at one point Lun Lun was hanging over the top of the teepee and had one paw resting on Xi Lan’s head but he did not move. They really made me laugh for quite a while. She is still the boss but I find that she is much more relax and easy on Xi Lan than she was with Mei Lan.

  66. #61 Joy…I don’t mind at all! It’s good to know I’m not the only one with a sense of wide-eyed wonder when it comes to watching and learning about pandas. :)

  67. AZ has posted a short video of Xi Lan and Lun Lun ‘wrestling’. Lun Lun has to be the most exuberant, playful mother Panda. She ‘throws’ herself into playing — no wonder she is called Mommy Monster! Best of luck to Xi Lan as Mommy will always win (for now).

  68. #53 Amanda…The zoo in Mexico City has three female pandas and the youngest will be 19 in July. The other two bears are well into their 20’s and are past cub-bearing age. There have been attempts to mate all of them. Shuan Shuan was sent to the Beijing Zoo for two years about 5 years ago to mate with their panda. No cubs were born. A panda from London was sent to Mexico City in other efforts to breed. I’ve also read that the Mexico City bears have, at times, been artificially inseminated with frozen sperm from China.

    The original panda pair donated to the zoo by China died in 1989. The two older female pandas that I mentioned are their offspring. The youngest female panda is the original pairs’ “granddaughter” and daughter of the London panda.

  69. Our local PBS radio station just finished a “What webcam are you watching?” call-in. I was first in line and so glad to promote all of the US webcams while watching Su Lin enjoying a yawn before resuming her nap.

  70. Mei Sheng looks like a happy panda and master of all he surveys from up in his tree.

    Someone asked about this earlier–why is Gao Gao licking his lips so much–or sticking his tongue out so much? Did he have a honey treat? Is that how pandas clean their teeth?

    Moderator’s note: No honey that day. His keepers say this is a mild habit of his that he does from time to time.

  71. I had brain freeze on my #68 post and need to correct…Shuan Shuan was sent to the Tokyo Zoo, not the Beijing Zoo. Sorry for my mental “typo.” I have too many zoos on my brain and got them turned around!

  72. Wow!! Who am I looking at in C32? I don’t think I’ve ever seen this angle before. Anyone figured it out?

  73. Hi! Just got on the SDZ cam today, and I’m wondering who is that panda on C32?? I’m thinking that it’s ZZ but I’m not sure. Can the moderator or anyone let me know who the panda is because C32 is not listed on the cam list! :} — baffled!!!
    Thanks,
    Chari Mercier :)
    St. Pete, FL

    Moderator’s note: Su Lin is on C32 today.

  74. What has happened to Zhen Zhen? I really miss seeing her!

  75. Well, at about 7:45pm EDT (my time) on Friday, 3/27/2009, I got on the SDZ cam and finally got to watch ZZ eating her boo! what’s funny about her and her boo is that she is kind of picky as to which stalks to get out of the pile. I watched her get up, walk over the boo pile, get her nose in the pile to sniff around, then she finally pulled out a bunch of stalks that she wants to eat! She shook some of the extras off of her then started to eat her boo selection. She’s a funny bear when she has her quirks going! She was on cam C15 when I caught her on there!
    Gonna go for now. Will write in later on.
    Chari Mercier :)
    St. Pete, FL

  76. I saw zz eating her boo tonite around 9:30 pm eastern time zone, she looked so cute, I always know who she is by the way she eats her boo.

  77. Margaret#64 My husband says he is interested in the world wild life fund electric power shut off on saturday the 28th. He went to msnbc.com and did not find anything. Can you say what you clicked in to. He said he typed wild life fund and electric shut off world shut off, and even went to the homepage. He wants to know if it’s volunteer shut offs or states doing it by way of the grids. Thanks if you can help.

  78. When will Gao Gao be able to see Bai Yun from the howdy gate?

  79. It’s so great to hear about our wonderful boy Mei Sheng. I sure do miss him!! I’m so glad to hear he is doing well in China and has a new exhibit to romp and play in. Any news you can send us about him is very much appreciated!!! As you may have guessed by now, Mei Sheng has a “huge” fan base in the US, especially in California! We just love him and miss him and hope he is happy and that he makes many little pandas! We love you Mei Sheng!!!

  80. Hi! Got on the SDZ pandacam today and tonite. Saw Bai eating her lunch during the afternoon, and then the cam was on ZZ’s room when I got back on the pandacam tonite. But, there was no ZZ in there! Just a pile of bamboo sitting there waiting for her. Will go back on the cam to see if she’s showed up.
    Video alerts from Memphis Zoo! They have added 2 more videos about Ya Ya in the last 3 days. The first one is Day 2, all 3 parts in one video from 3/27; the second on is Day 3 (all) video from 3/30. They both have more good, interesting info about Ya Ya and the process that they go thru to check her hormone levels (estrogens and progestins). They also said that they will be running those tests everyday and start the ultrasounds in the next couple of months. Keep your fingers crossed for a baby panda! Also, got an email from MZ about their panda and polar bear cams, and they are getting them reset and back online. They are also getting set up with a new server that will be much better and stronger to handle all of the cam traffic when people get on the website everyday. They want to get that done very soon so when Ya Ya does have her baby panda cub, they won’t have to deal with these blackout problems anymore.
    Does anyone at the SDZ panda house know if Bai Yun is showing any signs of estrus yet? Please let us know, ok? Also, no new recent news about Mei Xiang in DC since her AIs were done on Jan. 17. Hope to get some news about her and her hormone levels soon.
    Well, gonna go for now! Will write again later on!
    Chari Mercier :)
    St. Pete, FL

  81. Chari#80 I got a good look at Mei in D.C. this afternoon and she was on her back and I noticed that they shaved her belly, so I guess they will be doing ultra sounds soon. I havent had a chance to see much cam only a peek now and then so thanks to all for keeping me informed by your blogs.

  82. #77 Betsy, Sorry but I just saw your post on 4/5. I forgot about the electric turn off myself, and am trying to remember what I was doing last Saturday at that time. I think I was not home so my house would have been dark.

  83. #77 Betsy, it was called Earth Hour. I googled it and found several articles before it happened but nothing afterward. I don’t know how it went but since it was a rolling event starting in Fiji and going around the globe as time zones changed, it should have been a big awareness event for carbon footprint.

  84. #77 Check out Michigan State website. They are one of the biggest sponsors in US.

  85. Videos from Earth Hour around the world are available on YouTube. Some pretty neat stuff happened and made a significant impact on carbon footprint awareness. Check it out!

  86. THAT’S OUR BOY!!!!

  87. hi there. i am a big giant panda fan but mostly a freak about them. do you know how i could help save them? plus can you tell ma almost everything about them that you because i wold love to learn more about them? when i grow up i really hope i can help save them and have a musem with more than 50 pandas in there. also i am hoping i can get more bamboo for them to eat because that is there favorite food. if my dream does not come true i would love to work at the san diego zoo with the pandas. i always looke at the panda cam to see them and i always see Gao Gao laying on a rock with bamboo like a blanket on his lap. that is so cute. i also see sue lin wondering around and around. i have a sister but she loves polar bears way to much and she also watches the polar bears on the cam. sense i love the panda too much i have a build-a-bear panda with the cutest clothing. her name is April because that is when my birthday is and my brother got it for me on my birthday. i have April with me right now while she is wrapped up in a panda blanket. well i better go and i really hope you get this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  88. 😀 Oh Mei Sheng is so cute!!! 😉 Oh he looks so happy there! way up in his trees. :)

  89. I love Mei Sheng. I am in awe of him. I am glad he is happy in his new home. He looks so cute up in that tree. It is funny that he has to be called down from his tree. I miss seeing Mei Sheng up in a tree at the San Diego Zoo. I remember watching him on panda cam, I think he was out there in the rain once. We were just watching him. He looks so sweet. I miss him, but I am glad he is happy.