Belgium's 'Extremely Rare' Panda Twins Wave to Cameras After Getting New Names
The duo have been named Bao Di (translated as "Little brother of Tian Bao) and Bao Mei (little sister of Tian Bao).
Image credit: Twitter
Remember the panda twins that were born in Belgium's Pairi Daiza zoo earlier in August? The two marked 100 days of their birth on Thursday in a ceremony where zoo authorities displayed the healthy cubs to the world and also revealed their names.
While the first couple of months are always dangerous for panda babies, the duo seem to be out of the woods and have been named Bao Di (translated as "Little brother of Tian Bao) and Bao Mei (little sister of Tian Bao). Both of them are the offspring of the famous panda Hao Hao, who previously gave birth to Tian Bao in Belgium itself.
In photos released on social media, the vivacious panda cubs can be seen waving happily at the cameras!
"Now we have official names!" The two giant pandas born at Pairi Daiza zoo in Belgium named Bao Di and Bao Mei on their 100-day celebration. Find out what the names mean: https://t.co/kfIZLwBkde pic.twitter.com/k96rqSCbcv— China Xinhua News (@XHNews) November 14, 2019
The naming of the pandas was an elaborate affair including a public vote that lasted several days. An initial list of proposals fro the name was chosen by the Chinese Ambassador to Belgium, Cao Zhongming as well as the team from the Prairi Daiza Zoo. The names were then put to a vote online where everyone could vote for their favourite names.
The current names were chosen after about 73,000 votes.
speaking at the ceremony, the Chinese ambassador hoped that the "giant pandas could help the Belgian people better understand China, and bond us in our friendship for the future," Xinhua News reported.
An international program for the conservation of giant pandas was established by China over 30 years ago, the zoo said. In 2016, the status of giant pandas was changed from endangered to vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
The mother, Hao Hao, who had been loaned to the park by China in 2014, was inseminated with the cubs in April. The birth of the cubs in august had been dubbed "extremely rare" by the zoo.
(With inputs from Reuters)
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