Shanghai Expo giant pandas meet with public

21:54, January 20, 2010      

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Giant pandas play at Shanghai Zoo in Shanghai, the host city of the 2010 World Expo, in east China, Jan. 20, 2010. The ten pandas are on show to the public on Wednesday after they settled here Jan. 5. (Xinhua/Pei Xin)

Ten giant panda cubs, which will be on display at this year's Shanghai World Expo at local zoos, made their public debut at the Shanghai Zoo on Wednesday.

The pandas, six females and four males, had perfectly adapted to their new home since their arrival from southwest China's Sichuan Province on Jan. 5, said Chen Lihua, director of the zoo's feeding department.

They will be on display in the Shanghai Zoo during the first half of the year and then in the Shanghai Wildlife Zoo in the latter half year.

Zoo officials said it would be the largest scale of display of giant pandas outside Sichuan, which would give tens of millions of Chinese and foreign visitors to the Expo a glimpse at the highly endangered species.

The Shanghai Expo will run from May 1 to Oct. 31, expected to receive around 70 million visitors.

The Shanghai Zoo, which already has three older giant pandas, has built new exhibition areas and established bamboo supply bases to ensure sufficient food for the pandas.

The price for the ticket to the zoo would not change during the panda exhibition, zoo officials said.

The cubs, all about one year and a half old, were born in Sichuan Wolong Breeding Base after the deadly Wenchuan earthquake on May 12, 2008.

Giant pandas, known for being sexually inactive, are among the world's most endangered animals due to shrinking habitat.

There are about 1,600 giant pandas living in China's wild, mostly in Sichuan and the northwestern provinces of Shaanxi and Gansu.

Source: Xinhua
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