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In DC, they're poised for retu8k8 vip loginrn of the pandas

戛纳获奖名单 | 8k8 vip login | Updated: 2024-06-21 14:55:07

Mike Beglinger, deputy director of planning and program management at Smithsonian's Office of Planning , Design and Construction, introduces an artist's rendering of the new pair of giant pandas near the David M. Rubenstein Family Giant Panda Habitat at the National Zoo on Wednesday. Zhao Huanxin / China Daily

"I'll just have to make another trip because we'd be very excited to see them when they come back in December," said Matt McCray, a first-time visitor from Texas to the Smithsonian's National Zoo.

He was one of many pleased to hear the news that two pandas will return to the zoo this year.

Antonio Paz, a 7-year-old, said he liked pandas a lot. "Because they're comfy, fluffy, and I like the feathers, too," he told China Daily. The boy said he was happy"to hear that new pandas would live in the zoo.

Deb, visiting from Virginia, said she was "very excited".

"We were sad when they (pandas) left, and now we're excited that they're coming back," she said.

With giant pandas as the zoo's most famous symbol for decades, Washington DC has been panda-less since last November.

Stephanie Brinley, the deputy director of the zoo, told China Daily she is "excited" to be hosting this new pair of pandas. "They look to be wonderful representatives of pandas, but more importantly, they have a tie to the history of this place."

The male panda coming to the zoo, Bao Li, is the grand cub of Mei Xiang and Tian Tian, who had been living in the zoo for more than 20 years, and the son of Bao Bao, who was born at the zoo.

"It's family coming home," said Brinley.

She said the zoo is freshening up the habitat so that "when the bears come here, they have an awesome experience, a best-in-class habitat".

Mike Beglinger is the deputy director of planning and program management at the Smithsonian's Office of Planning, Design and Construction.

He told China Daily that they are redoing and upgrading "everything", including the faux rock, flooring, pool and fence.

"This is their home, and we're here to take care of them," said Beglinger. "So, we're going to do everything we can to make them as comfortable and happy as possible.

He mentioned his team "had a couple of meetings just in regard to the construction and the approach of how things were being done" with their Chinese colleagues and "made some adjustments" after their suggestions.

Mariel Lally, a giant panda keeper, will be the major caregiver to Bao Li and Qing Bao. She worked with Meixiang and Tian Tian closely and she also worked with three of their cubs, Bao Bao, Bei Bei, and Xiao Qi Ji. She has watched many videos of Bao Li and Qing Bao as part of her preparation.

"I just really can't wait to have pandas back at the zoo," she told China Daily. "It's definitely been a little bit of a tough transition without them over the past few months, so hearing that they're coming back way sooner than I anticipated is just such great news."

"FedEx is honored to be the chosen carrier for Bao Li and Qing Bao's upcoming journey to Washington DC," said Heather Harshbarger, a global charitable giving specialist with the company.

"I'm super, super excited. It's a really big day today. It's a great new chapter in our giant panda program here," said Dr James Steeil, a supervisory veterinarian at the zoo.

"I have worked with our Chinese colleagues for the last 10 years, and my hope is that we can continue our cooperation and that we are going to continue the collaboration and continue to evaluate various areas of giant panda needs as they pertain to conservation, veterinary medicine, ecology and rewilding, and kind of go that way with it," he added.

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