China to Send 2 Giant Pandas to American Zoo, Announces Plan – One America News Network

TOPSHOT - Giant pandas eat bamboo at the Bifengxia Base of China Conservation and Research Centre for the giant panda after a magnitude 7.0 earthquake hit the city of Ya'an, southwest China's Sichuan province on April 20, 2013. About 60 shocked giant pandas are now under the care of breeders. More than 100 people were killed and 3,000 injured when a strong earthquake shook southwest China on April 20, wrecking homes and triggering landslides in an area devastated by a major tremor in 2008. CHINA OUT AFP PHOTO (Photo by AFP) (Photo by STR/AFP via Getty Images)
Giant pandas eat bamboo at the Bifengxia Base of China Conservation and Research Centre for the giant panda on April 20, 2013. (Photo by STR/AFP via Getty Images)

OAN’s Sophia Flores
3:33 PM – Thursday, February 22, 2024

China is reportedly sending two giant pandas to the San Diego Zoo, which is arguably considered to be the best zoo in the United States.


“The world-renowned San Diego Zoo spans 100 acres and houses more than 12,000 rare and endangered animals. In addition to the 600 different species on display, the zoo’s 700,000 types of plants create a lush jungle environment unlike any other,” according to

On Thursday, it was announced that a cooperative agreement for a giant panda collaboration was signed by both the China Wildlife Conservation Association and the San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance (SDZWA).

“We look forward to further expanding the results of scientific research on the protection of endangered species such as the giant panda through the new round of international cooperation, promoting people-to-people connectivity and enhancing civilian friendship with relevant countries,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning said on Thursday at a regular news briefing in Beijing.

A male and female panda bear could arrive to the zoo as soon as this summer, as long as all permits and other requirements are taken care of and approved.

According to Dr. Megan Owen, one of the female pandas that China is considering sending to San Diego is also a distant relative of two of the zoo’s previous panda residents.

The San Diego Zoo has not had giant pandas since 2019. The most famous panda to join this particular zoo was “Hua Mei.” Hua Mei was the first giant panda cub to survive to adulthood in the United States, and she was born on August 21st, 1999. However, the female panda was sent back to China after spending time in San Diego.

This move comes months after the 50-year panda loan agreement with China expired.

The future of giant pandas coming back to the United States in the near future had looked slim to none. When Chinese President Xi Jinping visited San Francisco, California, in November, he shocked many by stating that some pandas could soon be returning to the Golden State soon as “envoys of friendship between the Chinese and American peoples.”

“I was told that many American people, especially children, were really reluctant to say goodbye to the pandas, and went to the zoo to see them off,” Xi said at a dinner during his visit. “I also learned that the San Diego Zoo and the Californians very much look forward to welcoming pandas back.”

“We are ready to continue our cooperation with the United States on panda conservation, and do our best to meet the wishes of the Californians so as to deepen the friendly ties between our two peoples,” he continued.

The program is also in talks about sending pandas to the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., and to the Schönbrunn Zoo in Vienna as well.

It is believed that there are currently only 1,864 giant pandas in the world. 600 of those giant pandas live in captivity. Meanwhile, only one of those pandas, Xin Xin, is not owned by China.

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