Giant panda breeding base planned in Changsha

Updated: 2010-01-20 16:46
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CHANGSHA: Four young adult giant pandas are expected to arrive in central China's Changsha on May 1, as the first inhabitants of China's fifth giant panda breeding base, a Changsha Zoo official said on Wednesday.

The construction of a giant panda museum was completed on Sunday, Xie Zhongsan, director of administration office of the zoo, said, adding the cubs would be sent from southwest China's Sichuan Chengdu Breeding Base.

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"We've already signed a cooperation agreement with Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Base, and we are awaiting the forestry authorities' approval of the new breeding base," Xie said.

He said the opening date of the base would be confirmed once the plan was approved.

Xie also said they would only have four pandas this year, but the base, in Hunan Province, would expect more.

"We plan to arrange two to three panda experts to take care of the giant pandas and we'll learn how to help them breed," Xie said.

China's other four giant panda breeding bases are the Beijing Zoo Breeding Base, Sichuan Wolong Breeding Base, Sichuan Chengdu Breeding Base and northwest China's Shaanxi Qinling Breeding Base.

About 1,590 pandas live in the wild around the country, mostly in Sichuan and the northwestern provinces of Shaanxi and Gansu. Another 180 are in captivity.