Chimelong Safari Park in Guangzhou has become famous for its incredible breeding successes – most famously the world’s only surviving panda triplets and koala twins. Pandas have notoriously short windows of time in which to breed (around 3 days a year) and it was the job of the breeders at Chimelong to interpret when this window was, get the pandas to breed in this time and also check the pandas were actually pregnant! So it was nothing short of a miracle when giant panda mum Juxiao gave birth to 3 baby pandas in 2014. Watch their incredible journey to date:
If you thought that they were cute, check out today’s upload about China’s koala bears. We look at the team behind the successful breeding of koala bears. In fact, the programme has become so successful that Chimelong is now seen as the second home of the koala behind their native habitat in Australia. Chen Shu Qing is part of the breeding team behind the many successes at Chimelong Safari Park.
She was the first koala breeder in China and after helping the first koalas settle in in 2006, her care and attentiveness prepare her for helping Giant Panda, Juxiao, raise her 3 panda triplets.
It doesn’t stop there. Chimelong is home to the largest elephant population in Asia, managing to deliver 5 calves in one season and hosts 150 White Tigers with only 200 left in the world. By breeding more endangered species, the team at Chimelong Safari Park hope that it reduces the chances of them becoming extinct, both in the wild and in captivity.
It’s clear that the breeding team at Chimelong have done so much for the preservation of endangered species so that the rest of us will hopefully be able to enjoy them for many years to come.
News and Travel Editor
I am so excited about this week’s new video because I think it might be my favourite one yet. It feels extra special to me because we get to celebrate the birthday of not one, not two but THREE incredibly cute pandas. The Triplets of Chimelong are the oldest (and only!) surviving triplets EVER!
Why is this a big deal? Firstly, there are only 1800 Pandas left in the world. Secondly, in the wild, a mother can only raise one cub, meaning that in the wild only 2/3 cubs would have survived to adulthood! Thanks to the researchers at Chimelong, the three Pandas are now celebrating their second birthday. It’s great to watch them grow up over the space of this video from being pale, pink and the size of an orange to the recognizable Panda we know and love.
I loved learning more about the Pandas’ personalities as they grow up! Meng Meng, the oldest and only female, is the quiet one, and the chubbiest as she is the least active! Next comes Shuai Shuai who’s a lot more mischievous and loves to wrestle with his siblings. Ku Ku is more chilled, but him and Shuai Shuai keep each other trim through lots of play fighting!
I spend quite a lot of time using my job as an excuse to look at Panda photos (evidence: my favourite past blog) but I was really surprised to come across facts that I hadn’t discovered before. My favourite being that the Mama Pandas carries the newborn cubs in her mouth to keep them safe and warm.
It is so lovely seeing the Pandas’ affection for each other and for the researchers who work so hard to help the species survive in the future. I wish there was a Panda who wanted to follow me every time I try to leave work!
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