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Austrian-born panda arrives a 'happy tiger'

By HUANG ZHILING (China Daily)

08:41, November 09, 2012

Fuhu, a 2-year-old male panda, returns to his homeland, accompanied by personnel at the Bifengxia Base of China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda in Sichuan province on Thursday. Fuhu was born at the Vienna Zoo in Austria. HENG YI / FOR CHINA DAILY

A star attraction since his birth in the Vienna Zoo, a 2-year-old giant panda Fuhu returned to China on Thursday.

He returned to the Bifengxia Base of the China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda at about 5:30 pm. After a brief welcoming ceremony, he started a month-long quarantine in his new den in the base. He is expected to meet visitors in one month, said Tang Chunxiang, assistant to the director of the center.

Fuhu, which literally means "Happy Tiger" in Chinese, bid farewell to his birthplace in Vienna on Tuesday. He traveled to Amsterdam, the Netherlands, by road, before getting on a plane at 20:45 pm on Wednesday and landing at Shuangliu International Airport in Chengdu, Sichuan province, at 1:30 pm on Thursday.

Born in August 2010, Fuhu is the second cub of the Chinese panda pair Yangyang and Longhui, who were transferred from China to the Vienna Zoo in 2003, and are on loan to Austria from China for 10 years with the understanding that their offspring would be returned to their homeland at the age of 2.

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