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Giant panda News Archive

Giant panda
Mar. 19, 2018
The beginning of March was a whirlwind at the Giant Panda Habitat. Mei Xiang finally went into peak estrus March 1 after the panda team had been monitoring her and Tian Tian 24-hours-a-day for nearly...
Mar. 01, 2018
A team of reproductive scientists, veterinarians and panda keepers at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute performed an artificial insemination on giant panda Mei Xiang.
Mei Xiang
Feb. 21, 2018
Keepers have noticed some dramatic changes in Mei Xiang and Tian Tian’s behavior during the past several days. On Saturday, Feb. 17, Mei Xiang started showing behavioral changes that indicate she may...
giant panda bei bei eating bamboo
Feb. 16, 2018
Giant panda Bei Bei celebrated the Lunar New Year with some special Year of the Dog enrichment! 
Mei Xiang in the snow.
Dec. 19, 2017
As the days get shorter and the weather gets cooler, the pandas are spending more time in their yards.  Panda keepers sometimes get asked by the visitors why we place the bamboo and enrichment items...
Bei Bei
Nov. 29, 2017
Bei Bei started showing signs of abdominal discomfort overnight Saturday, Nov. 25. As a result, the panda team began monitoring him closely. He passed a mucous stool on Sunday, Nov. 26, and began...
Tian Tian receiving a full veterinary exam.
Nov. 15, 2017
Tian Tian had a preventative health exam yesterday. He was taken to the veterinary hospital, which allowed our veterinarians to get an up-close and in-depth look at him while he was under anesthesia.
Sep. 14, 2017
The giant panda team at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute has determined that Mei Xiang (may-SHONG) will not give birth this year.
Mei Xiang
Sep. 08, 2017
The panda team is still waiting to find out if Mei Xiang will give birth or if she is experiencing a pseudopregnancy. Giant pandas’ hormones and behavior mimic a pregnancy even if they are...
Mei Xiang
Sep. 01, 2017
The panda house is closed to the public beginning today, Sept. 1 to provide quiet for Mei Xiang as she enters the final stages of a pregnancy or pseudopregnancy. 
Mei Xiang
Aug. 25, 2017
Mei Xiang has started exhibiting more behaviors consistent with the secondary hormone phase of a pregnancy or a pseudopregnancy. That means that she has been spending the majority of her time...
Mei Xiang
Aug. 18, 2017
Beginning Aug. 18, the David M. Rubenstein Family Giant Panda Habitat will be partially closed to keep a quiet area around panda Mei Xiang’s den. Although we are not able to confirm if she is...
a giant panda walks along rocks
Aug. 18, 2017
The Giant Panda Habitat will be partially closed to keep a quiet area around female giant panda Mei Xiang’s den. Although keepers are not able to confirm if she is pregnant, Mei Xiang is exhibiting...
Mei Xiang receives an ultrasound
Aug. 11, 2017
Veterinarians are giving Mei Xiang weekly ultrasounds to track changes in her uterus. Though it's too early to see a possible cub on an ultrasound, SCBI scientists detected a rise in hormones,...
Mei Xiang
Aug. 04, 2017
Behavior can tell the giant panda team quite a bit about the pandas, but the behaviors they exhibit are only half the story. When it comes to predicting when Mei Xiang will give birth, or when she is...
Bei Bei eating a frozen fruitsicle
Jul. 21, 2017
Activity at the giant panda habitat has slowed since the flurry of breeding season in May. Keepers, Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute scientists and veterinarians were monitoring Mei Xiang...
May. 26, 2017
The Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute’s team of reproductive scientists, veterinarians and panda keepers performed two artificial inseminations on female giant panda Mei...
Giant panda Mei Xiang walking in the grass. There is a large rock to the right in the foreground.
May. 23, 2017
Mei Xiang, the Zoo’s 18-year-old female giant panda, is showing behavioral and physical signs of estrus.
Bei Bei
May. 18, 2017
Bei Bei is a bit of a daredevil. Although eating and sleeping are still his favorite pastimes, the giant panda cub also loves to climb trees. Lately, he has been climbing trees in his yard and...
Mar. 23, 2017
Tian Tian is ready for breeding season. He is in full rut, which means that he frequently scent marks and can be very restless. Those are normal behaviors for a male panda readying himself for...
Giant panda Bei Bei rests and eats bamboo on a rock in his indoor habitat
Mar. 15, 2017
The Smithsonian's National Zoo has received good questions about the giant panda weaning process and recent behaviors exhibited by Bei Bei and Mei Xiang. The giant panda science and animal care team...
Giant panda Bao Bao eating bamboo in China at the Dujiangyan panda base
Mar. 09, 2017
Bao Bao is settling into her new home in China. Upon arriving at the Dujiangyan panda base, Bao Bao entered her new habitat without hesitation and immediately started exploring. True to character,...
Giant panda Bei Bei
Mar. 04, 2017
People who have been watching the panda cams have seen some big changes over the last few weeks. Bei Bei is weaning from Mei Xiang. We have heard from many worried panda fans as Mei Xiang and Bei Bei...
Giant panda Bao Bao sits and eats bamboo
Feb. 22, 2017
Bao Bao, her keeper Marty Dearie and Dr. Katharine Hope landed at China’s Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport around 6:59 p.m. CST after a 16-hour direct flight aboard the “FedEx Panda Express,”...
bao bao eating bamboo
Feb. 21, 2017
VIDEO: Here's a look back at what Bao Bao means to all of us.