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Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

washington dc
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Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

From the National Zoo:

We are still in full panda pregnancy watch and the panda house is now closed to visitors. Mei is especially sensitive to noise, so we keep the panda house as quiet as possible to reduce possible noise-related stress. Virtual Zoo visitors can see Mei Xiang and Tian Tian on the panda cams. Tian Tian will also be in his yard during the day from early morning until about noon.

Mei has been less interested in food lately. She has almost completely stopped eating bamboo; she mostly just shreds it for her nest now. She chooses to not eat much of the produce we give her—like pears and sweet potatoes. These are signs that we are approaching the end of a pregnancy or pseudopregnancy. Over the holiday weekend, keepers started to see her cradle some of her toys and begin body licking. She will most likely spend more time doing those things as we get closer to the end of a pregnancy or pseudopregnancy.

Although Mei has been sleeping a lot more, she continues to diligently build her nest. It is much larger than it was last week. She dragged two very large bamboo stalks into her den. They are so big that they stick out into her indoor habitat, which makes cleaning in the morning more challenging.

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1. Re: Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

Thank you for posting this info, we are arriving in DC Oct. 6 and have been talking up the pandas at the zoo with 5 & 8 year olds. Now we will watch the panda webcams from home and visit the zoo on a future trip.

Washington DC...
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2. Re: Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

You will still be able to see the pandas if they are outside. And that's generally when they are the most interesting too. Best of the weather isn't too warm.

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3. Re: Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

So only the inside viewing area is closed then, and we will still be able to see the panda(s)? My hubby thinks the time involved with going up to the zoo... that it's really not worth it since we have been to lots of zoos... I have been insisting that we go if for nothing else than to have the kids see the pandas. So if we go, and they are not on display, I'll never hear the end of it! Thanks!

Washington, DC
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4. Re: Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

The male may or may not be out. I think it is up to him (as he has free access to go in and out) so I agree I would not want to disappoint the kids. However it may be found out that Mei is not pregnant by the time you arrive so keep searching the zoo website. Everyone is hoping she is pregnant because this may be the last time for her to be pregnant before the pandas will be sent back to China unless they renegotiate their stay. I moved to DC a week after the last baby was born and I hope we get to have baby panda fever again.

Edited: 08 September 2012, 14:36
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5. Re: Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

Well it looks like you'll be catching baby panda fever again! I think our plan is to head to the zoo Wednesday morning before we leave DC. We are only heading as far York, PA so I think we should have lots of time for the zoo.

Bellevue, Nebraska
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6. Re: Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

And now there is a baby panda!

…msn.com/id/…

Edited: 17 September 2012, 14:54
Greensboro, North...
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7. Re: Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

Panda cam!

…si.edu/Animals/GiantPandas/default.cfm…

Groton, Connecticut
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8. Re: Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

Sad news today about the Panda Cub. Was at the Zoo and at the Panda exhibit around this time and saw a lot of people go running towards the exhibit. Shorly thereafter, got the email about the passing of the cub. Not a surprise given the small size of it and the risks of a Panda Cub.

Other than this, it was a great day at the Zoo.

washington dc
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9. Re: Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

And thankfully, the zoo continues to support so many endangered species that might not have the "cute factor" of a Panda, but are so interesting, fun to visit,and vital! Sad news for one species, but please enjoy and support all the other animals the national zoo so devotedly cares for.

Groton, Connecticut
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10. Re: Zoo - Panda House now closed to visitors

Victoria, without a doubt, I agree with you and we definitely did and will.