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Smithsonian's national zoo begins weeklong goodbye to giant panda Bei Bei
11/13/2019




U.S.-born male giant panda Bei Bei is seen at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington D.C., the United States, on Nov. 11, 2019. (Xinhua/Liu Jie)

"Giant pandas here at the national zoo are celebrities. They are rock stars," said a spokesperson for the Smithsonian's National Zoo. "We have a lot of people who are going to be coming to wish Bei Bei a fond farewell."

WASHINGTON, Nov. 11 (Xinhua) -- A weeklong farewell party for U.S.-born male giant panda Bei Bei, who is to depart the Smithsonian's National Zoo for China later this month, kicked off here on Monday.

Bei Bei's departure, scheduled for Nov. 19, is part of the U.S. national zoo's cooperative breeding agreement with the China Wildlife Conservation Association that all cubs born here shall move to China after the fourth birthday. Bei Bei turned four on Aug. 22.

An online and on-site series of "Bye Bye, Bei Bei" celebratory events were running on Monday through next week, allowing giant panda lovers to bid a farewell to Bei Bei before he starts the next chapter of his life.

At a postcard station next to Bei Bei's outdoor habitat on Monday morning, his fans were taking turns to write a farewell note that will travel with him to China.

Angela Wessel, a giant panda lover and zoo volunteer, told Xinhua she's going to miss Bei Bei a lot, adding that she plans to travel to China next year to visit him.

Bei Bei appeared to be in a light mood, wandering around in his habitat before sitting down to lazily chew bamboo. He also climbed a tree like he always does, delighting his visitors.

His mother Mei Xiang and father Tian Tian, who arrived in Washington D.C. in late 2000, live next door. Bei Bei's brother Tai Shan and sister Bao Bao moved to China respectively in 2010 and 2017.

"Giant pandas here at the national zoo are celebrities. They are rock stars," said Annalisa Meyer, a spokesperson for the zoo. "We have a lot of people who are going to be coming to wish Bei Bei a fond farewell."

Preparation for Bei Bei's journey started last month, which included acclimating him to a travel crate used for his flight.

Assistant curator Laurie Thompson, who will travel with Bei Bei to China, said the giant panda was doing very well with the crate.

"The first time you saw he was a little nervous, but now he goes in there and sits down and eats and seems very happy," Thompson said.

When departing for China, Bei Bei, with a supply of his favorite treats, will be accompanied by Thompson and a veterinarian on a non-stop flight to China's Chengdu in a dedicated B777 aircraft by FedEx.

Upon arrival in Chengdu, Bei Bei's new keepers will accompany him to one of the bases run by the China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda, and Thompson will remain with Bei Bei for a short time while he acclimates to his new home.

Bei Bei will enter the giant panda breeding program when he reaches sexual maturity between five and seven years old, according to the U.S. national zoo.

Dubbed China's "national treasure," giant pandas mainly live in southwest China's Sichuan Province as well as neighboring provinces of Shaanxi and Gansu.

The latest census in 2014 found there were 1,864 giant pandas alive in the wild, up from 1,114 decades ago. The number of pandas bred in captivity reached 548 globally as of last November, according to China's National Forestry and Grassland Administration.

Giant pandas are solitary in the wild, and cubs separate from their mothers to establish their own territories between 18 months and two years old. ■


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本目录中最多阅览的文章

朱易 : 马鞍峰教会的增长及其深远影响 (1) 
许多前来参加每年一次牧师研讨会的牧师感到(2003年人数达到二十五万之多),他们正经历著一场由华理克牧师主导的改革运动,他们好像又回到了激动人心的马丁路德改教运动的时代,不同的是他们可以与领导今天这场改革的领袖相遇和交谈。

华理克牧师认为马丁路德时代的改革是让教会清楚教会所相信的是什么,这也是我们今天还在传讲的信息和教义,而今天的改革是让教会清楚教会要做什么


第二次宗教改革的呼声 
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朱易 : 马鞍峰教会的增长模式和教会市场法的危机 (1) 
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不少学者持怀疑的态度, 他们认为“目标导向”不过是将传统的基督教原则作了不同的包装。




《断背山》风头正健,价值观江河日下 (1) 
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朱易: 他的正面思维影响了全世界 (1) 
但是斯凯勒在教会界配受尊重,除了他在教堂的建造上独树一帜外,他的人品和神学上也颇为出色。他是少数几个没有丑闻的电视布道家之一,而让他成为非主流教会和许多基督徒仿效的对象的原因是,他的讲道着重正面信息,用正面思维看问题。


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