Pandas in Copenhagen zoo meet again to mate – future cubs belong to China 

Chinese pandas only have one chance a year to reproduce whether they live in the wild or in a zoo and now the pandas in Copenhagen zoo meet again to try the almost impossible task of creating offspring naturally.

JydskeVestkysten writes that this is the third time that the pandas in Copenhagen Zoo are trying to reproduce and should they succeed, the future cubs will belong to China just like the male named Xing Er and the female named Mao Sun do.

Xing Er and Mao Sun arrived in Denmark on April 4, 2019, from Chengdu Panda Base in China.

Upon arrival, Mao Sun was five years old, while Xing Er was six and Denmark leased the giant pandas for 15 years for the sum of close to DKK seven million.

If the pandas succeed to mate, the cubs will stay at Copenhagen Zoo until they are two years old when they will go back to China.

Female pandas only go into heat once a year and many of the pandas in the world today are products of a breeding program because the species was on the verge of extinction. This means that they were created by artificial insemination and that the cubs were taken earlier from their mother than they would have been in the wild to be able to breed quickly and preserve the species. The consequences of such actions mean that the pandas behave in a way that is not completely natural and especially the male pandas lack their natural instinct for what to do in a mating situation when the female is ready in her heat.

Several zoos in Europe continue to use artificial insemination to create new pups but the practice is not used in Copenhagen zoo where the hope is that the pandas will mate the natural way. 

About Gregers Møller

Editor-in-Chief • ScandAsia Publishing Co., Ltd. • Bangkok, Thailand

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