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Giant Panda Pregnancy Watch 2011
Zoo scientists and veterinarians performed two nonsurgical artificial insemination procedures on Mei Xiang in late January. They are monitoring Mei's hormones to assess her reproductive state.

Giant Panda Expectations 2009
Zoo scientists and veterinarians performed two nonsurgical artificial insemination procedures on Mei Xiang in January. They monitored Mei's hormones to assess her reproductive state. Zoo researchers determined that Mei Xiang experienced a pseudopregnancy this year.

Giant Panda Expectations 2008
Zoo scientists monitored Mei Xiang's hormones to assess her reproductive state. New data and analyses are posted frequently. On August 13, Zoo scientists confirmed that panda Mei Xiang will not give birth to a cub this year. They believe that she experienced either a pseudopregnancy or the loss of a developing fetus. Fetal loss during early pregnancy is a common occurrence in mammals, but the reasons for this phenomenon are poorly understood.

Giant Panda Expectations 2007
(July 5, 2007)
Zoo scientists once again monitored Mei Xiang's hormones to assess her reproductive state. She was articifically inseminated in early April. On July 5, Zoo scientists concluded that she had experienced a pseudopregnancy. There will be no cub this year.

Giant Panda Expectations 2005
(July 9, 2005)
After closely monitoring Mei Xiang's hormones and behavior, Zoo scientists determined that the 2005 mating season would begin March 10. Mei Xiang and Tian Tian did not mate successfully, but Mei Xiang was artificially inseminated with Tian Tian's semen on the morning of March 11. Zoo scientists monitored hormonal changes and behavior for clues to the progress of a possible pregnancy. Mei Xiang gave birth to a cub on July 9.

Factors associated with normal breeding behavior in male giant pandas in Chinese breeding centers
(Fall 2002)
Research Indicates that normal breeding behavior in male giant pandas is more likely in China due to exposure to femal pandas throughout the year, privacy in their environment and interaction with animal care staff, among other factors.

link iconForaging Skills Study 2002-2003
How do giant pandas find their food? That's one question that Lorie Tarou, Research Assistant for Giant Panda Behavior Studies, is interested in trying to answer. It may sound simple, but because of the pandas' unique categorization as an herbivorous carnivore, the usual assumptions about foraging are impossible to make.

The Giant Panda Bamboo Preference Studyat the National Zoo was designed to determine what kind of bamboo Mei Xiang and Tian Tian like most. Jessamine Williams, an undergrad in Georgetown University's biology program, conducted the research with direction from National Zoo scientists and wrote this research summary.

Research Symposium Summary January 2002
A giant panda research symposium held at the National Zoo January 15 and 16, 2002 entitled "GIANT PANDAS AND THE NATIONAL ZOO: From The First Year Into The Future" was a fascinating look at what scientists are most curious about with regard to the species. Find out for yourself what questions are being investigated.

link iconNational Zoo behaviorist David Powell spent the summer in China, where he studied the behavior of giant pandas at four different breeding centers or zoos.He, and everyone who is interested in giant pandas, wants to find ways to improve the breeding success of these endangered bears. These pages are extracted from the journal Powell kept while working in China.