Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sun Jan 31, 2021 7:37 pm

#PandaStory: Xiao Qi Ji vs. The Rock Wall
Jan. 01, 2021
:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... -rock-wall 1 min
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Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji continues to explore and take on new challenges—like climbing up rockwork in the indoor habitat he shares with mother Mei Xiang. As shown in this clip of “Xiao Qi Ji vs. the Rock Wall,” he’s getting stronger, more coordinated and is still an adorable little nugget.
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sun Jan 31, 2021 8:06 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... s-and-toys 56 sec
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#PandaStory: Tumbles and Toys
Jan. 11, 2021
This update was written by assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson.
Over the past few weeks, our giant panda team has observed cub Xiao Qi Ji spend more time exploring the large indoor enclosures he shares with his mother, Mei Xiang, and less time in their den. Mei Xiang seems to encourage this curiosity. The other day, she called to him while he was resting in the den, and he soon emerged and approached her.
Lately, he has been very interested in Mei Xiang’s activities. While she eats, he is often right by her side. As she discards bamboo, he gathers the pieces in his arms, rolls around and playfully gnaws on them. He tends to be more active and playful in the evenings, so tune into the Giant Panda Cam at night to see some adorable moments as they happen in real time.
Spending more time out of the den presents our cub with more opportunities to explore—and play! While we have presented Xiao Qi Ji with enrichment items before—most notably a pumpkin for Halloween—we have seen his interest in them grow exponentially since the beginning of January. These items encourage our giant pandas to keep physically active and mentally sharp; they also give the bears an opportunity to use their natural behaviors and choose how to spend their time.With Xiao Qi Ji becoming more aware of and interested in his surroundings, keepers gave him two toys to investigate: a small red Jolly Egg (perfectly sized for a panda cub) and an empty PVC puzzle feeder. When Xiao Qi Ji is exploring the habitat and happens upon them, he usually stops for a few minutes to paw at them, pick them up and give them a nibble. If you would like to help us replenish some of our worn but well-loved toys, you can do so by making a donation to the Enrichment Trunk.
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Some toys built for cubs are made from softer materials to help the animals grasp or chomp on them. Our team is very careful to watch Xiao Qi Ji as he plays during the day, since Mei Xiang’s more powerful teeth and jaws could damage the toys. Before we leave for the day, we remove these toys from the enclosure. Neither Mei Xiang nor Xiao Qi Ji seem to mind, content to eat or play with their bamboo overnight.
Personality-wise, Xiao Qi Ji seems to take after his mother. Like Mei Xiang, he is careful and cautious when it comes to exploring his environment. Now that he has mastered walking, he has started to practice his climbing skills. He is very deliberate about the paths he takes when traveling up or down the rockwork—more so than siblings Tai Shan, Bao Bao or Bei Bei were. He has taken a few tumbles here and there, but not nearly as many as his brothers and sister did at this age. Luckily, these bears are built to be robust and have thick, wooly fur to cushion their fall.
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Now that Xiao Qi Ji is more mobile, we weigh our cub in a tub. He sits patiently for a moment or two, then starts climbing out, eager to explore again. Our “little” cub is growing larger by the day and weighed 18.4 pounds (8.39 kilograms) as of Jan. 6. That’s up four pounds from his Dec. 16 checkup.
Now that he has received his rabies vaccine, the next big milestone on the horizon will be exploring his outdoor habitat in the coming weeks. Meantime, we enjoy watching our little explorer practice (and perfect) his climbing skills indoors!
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sun Jan 31, 2021 8:39 pm

#1 :vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... panda-cub 51sec
^<#PandaStory: A Playful Panda Cub
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#2 :vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... -panda-cub 31 sec
^<Giant Hockey Puck
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Jan. 15, 2021

This update was written by assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson.

Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji’s word of the week seems to be: play! Our 4.5-month-old cub’s interest in his surroundings really took off this week. He seems to explore the world with his mouth. He nibbles on everything from his paws and enrichment toys to mother Mei Xiang’s ears. While she is eating bamboo, we often see Xiao Qi Ji try to initiate a play session with a few not-so-ferocious bites. After Mei Xiang shifts outside in the morning, he often emerges from the den to “supervise” the keepers as they clean and get the habitat ready for Mei Xiang’s return.
Xiao Qi Ji is very deliberate about the paths he takes when traveling up or down the rockwork.
As I mentioned in my last update, Xiao Qi Ji received his first enrichment toys a few weeks ago and plays with them whenever they catch his attention. Those who have followed his sibling’ stories have asked when Xiao Qi Ji will get a rubber tub. With the adults, we often put leaf-eater biscuits or sensory enrichment (like bubbles) into these tubs. Cubs, though, seem to enjoy the exercise of climbing in-and-out or just sitting in this cub-sized space.
We weigh Xiao Qi Ji in one such tub. This week, he tipped the scales at 19.8 pounds (9.04 kilograms). He also receives tubs to play in during the day. He is not quite big enough to get out from underneath a tub if it were to overturn on top of him, so he only receives this enrichment during the day when we can keep an eye on him.
Slapshot straight to the heart. Xiao Qi Ji showed his hometown pride, playing with a giant hockey puck to kick off the Washington Capitals opening game Jan. 14!
Even though Mei Xiang will not go into estrus this year since she is caring for a cub, Xiao Qi Ji’s father, Tian Tian, is in the middle of rut (male breeding season). He has been very active lately climbing trees, marking his territory and splashing around in pools and hose water while we’re cleaning his enclosure.
For years, we have been adding spices to the pandas’ toys or sprinkling them in different spots around their yards for enrichment and to encourage them to explore. One of their favorite scents is clove spice. This year, we discovered that they prefer when we put the scent directly onto the mesh or their paws. They rub the spice all over themselves, a behavior called scent-anointing. As Xiao Qi Ji gets older, it will be interesting to see if he has the same nose for scents as mom and dad!
Lastly, some exciting news to share. The giant panda team will host a behind-the-scenes livestream with Xiao Qi Ji on Wednesday, Jan. 27 at 1 p.m.! Tune in as we give a guided tour of the panda house, answer some frequently asked questions and give you an up-close virtual encounter with our cub. If you are unable to join us live, a video recording will be available on our website post broadcast. We hope you’ll join us for this special event!
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sun Jan 31, 2021 8:47 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... xiao-qi-ji 36 sec
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#PandaStory: A Parcel of Sweet Potato for Xiao Qi Ji
Jan. 22, 2021


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This update was written by assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson.

Just like his mother, Mei Xiang, our giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji is curious yet cautious about the world around him. Yesterday—the day our cub turned five months old—we decided to introduce him to something new. Using a piece of bamboo shred as a spoon, we scraped some cooked sweet potato onto the end, then handed it over to Xiao Qi Ji. He grabbed the bamboo in his mouth, paused for a moment to take in the new taste, then lay back and licked the remainder. When we offered him more, he wouldn’t stop nibbling on it!
Xiao Qi Ji clearly enjoyed this new treat, which is not surprising since both Mei Xiang and his father, Tian Tian, are also fond of sweet potatoes. In addition to bamboo, nutrient-rich biscuits, carrots and apples, sweet potatoes are part of our pandas’ balanced diet.
Even though Xiao Qi Ji is beginning to sample some new foods, Mei Xiang’s milk is still his main source of nutrition. Around 1 year old, bamboo and other solid foods make up the majority of a panda's diet. However, Xiao Qi Ji may nurse for comfort up to 18 months of age. He typically nurses at night and in the early morning. On Wednesday, Jan. 20, he weighed 20.79 pounds (9.45 kilograms), and continues to make good gains.
Xiao Qi Ji has access to the leaf-eater biscuits and fruit that Mei Xiang receives. However, she is a pro at getting them out of her enrichment puzzle feeders, so there isn’t anything left for him to try! He doesn’t seem to mind since he has his own toys. This week, he received a small red ball, just like the one his older brother Bei Bei had! In the coming weeks, we will offer Xiao Qi Ji some fruit and softened biscuits when Mei Xiang is enjoying some alone time outside.
Looking for Tian Tian on the Giant Panda Cam? He is often on in the early morning and early afternoon while we are cleaning and placing bamboo in the bears’ enclosures. If you tune in at just the right time, you may even spot him doing some of the rut behaviors I mentioned in my last update!
This story appears in the Jan. 22 issue of the Giant Panda Bulletin; read previous cub updates here. Don’t forget to mark your calendar and tune in to the free livestream with Xiao Qi Ji Jan. 27 at 1 p.m.
Please note that the Zoo is temporarily closed as a public health precaution to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sun Jan 31, 2021 9:01 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... ste-bamboo 52 sec
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#PandaStory: A Bear’s First Taste of Bamboo
Jan. 29, 2021



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This update was written by giant panda keeper Mariel Lally.

This was a big week for our little panda cub! On Wednesday, Jan. 27, the giant panda team hosted our first-ever virtual encounter with Xiao Qi Ji. An important part of saving species is being able to tell their stories, and it was wonderful to see in the comments that many of you are as enamored with our adorable ambassador as we are. Your kind words and support for our bears and our team are much appreciated, especially as the Zoo remains closed and we continue to navigate this “new normal” brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Xiao Qi Ji’s newest enrichment toy made an appearance in Wednesday’s broadcast. This week, we gave him a bright green ball with a small handle. Since it is made from a softer material than the adults’ toys, it’s perfect for him to chew on and sink his claws into. It is also scented like green apple, providing some olfactory enrichment, too!
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During the livestream, this ball was at the center of a friendly game of tug-of-war between Xiao Qi Ji and keeper Marty Dearie. Don’t let Xiao Qi Ji’s small size fool you—he is remarkably strong! We watch his interactions closely to ensure these items never get too dinged up to the point where they are unsafe. As you can imagine, pandas can be tough on their toys. If you are in a position to give, you can help us purchase new toys when the old ones wear out by making a donation to our Enrichment Trunk.
Just before Xiao Qi Ji stole everyone’s hearts—and wrestled his new green ball away from Marty—we placed him on a scale for his weekly weigh-in. Since his last measurement seven days prior, our 5-month-old cub gained another two pounds. This week, he weighed 22 pounds (10 kilograms).
In her update last week, assistant curator Laurie Thompson mentioned that Xiao Qi Ji tried cooked sweet potato for the first time and was a big fan of this new food. This week, bamboo was on the menu. We saw him munching on some of his mother Mei Xiang’s leftover leaves.
As Xiao Qi Ji’s walking and climbing skills improve, we are starting to see him explore more and more of his habitat. Yesterday, he walked out of the den, through both indoor enclosures, and over to the opposite den. He sat up and pressed his face against the “take out window” where we routinely feed Mei Xiang. It was hilarious to see our curious cub waiting at the same window for us!
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sun Jan 31, 2021 9:26 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... n-and-hope
^<Review of past weeks, Videos & Photos of Xiao Qi Ji’s Milestones
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#PandaStory: A Symbol of Inspiration and Hope
As the calendar turns to 2021, it is human nature to reflect on the moments that sparked inspiration in an otherwise challenging year. Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji—who wobbled and walked, feistily barked at mother Mei Xiang and scaled the rockwork in his habitat—gave many who follow his milestones a reason to smile. Assistant curator Laurie Thompson’s December 2020 updates remind us that his #PandaStory serves as a source of hope for brighter days ahead.
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Thu Feb 11, 2021 5:48 pm

# 1 video~In case you missed the flurry, check out the video below to watch Mei Xiang sliding in the snow! :woohoo:
:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/new ... first-snow 51 sec.
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In case you missed the flurry, check out the video above to watch Mei Xiang sliding in the snow! :woohoo:

#PandaStory: A Chill Cub’s First Snow ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
Feb. 05, 2021


This update was written by giant panda keeper Marty Dearie and assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson.
On Sunday, Jan. 31, giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji experienced yet another big milestone—his first encounter with snow! As the flakes were falling, we brought Xiao Qi Ji out of the indoor enclosure to a snow-covered patio behind-the-scenes.
He seemed unsure about it at first and stood there for a moment to take it all in. Keeper Stacey Tabellario built him his own panda-cub-sized snowman. He sniffed it before taking a frosty bite. He explored the area for about five minutes before we took him back inside. Although his trip was a short one, he seemed to have a good time.
He was much more chill about it than his older brother Bei Bei. The first time we offered snow to Bei Bei, we brought it inside in a tub for him to explore. Instead, he barked at it and ran away! He sat on top of the mountain and stared at it for a few hours. As he got older, Bei Bei enjoyed tumbling and sliding in the snow—although perhaps not as much as his parents did this week!
(In case you missed the flurry, check out the video above to watch Mei Xiang sliding in the snow! You can also watch Tian Tian and some of our other animals having a ball in the wintry weather here.)
On Wednesday, we place Xiao Qi Ji on the scale for a quick weigh-in. He gained another pound since last week and measured 10.62 kilograms, or 23 pounds.
In the next few weeks, Xiao Qi Ji will have an opportunity to explore the outdoor habitat. Our team has been busy this week installing new tree guards in the yard he shares with his mother, Mei Xiang. These guards are designed to keep young cubs towards the bottom of the tree, where they can practice their climbing skills at a safe height. As Xiao Qi Ji grows and gains more confidence, he will be able to climb over the guards and higher up into the canopy.
On Sunday, Jan. 31, giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji experienced yet another big milestone—his first encounter with snow! As the flakes were falling, we brought Xiao Qi Ji out of the indoor enclosure to a snow-covered patio behind-the-scenes.:cold1:
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Jan. 31 | Five-month-old giant panda Xiao Qi Ji sniffs a cub-sized snowman before taking a frosty bite.

The tree guards in the yard he shares with his mother, Mei Xiang. These guards are designed to keep young cubs towards the bottom of the tree, where they can practice their climbing skills at a safe height.
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Thu Feb 11, 2021 6:25 pm

# 4 video on page 58 seconds V Feb. 2, 2021 | Giant panda Tian Tian had a ball in the snow today. Literally.
:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/news/snow-da ... tional-zoo 58 sec
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^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post~ You can also watch Tian Tian 4th video on page, and some of our other animals having a ball in the wintry weather here.
# 3 video on page ---- 51 seconds^
:vid:
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:ty: ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post ~ # 3 52 seconds Jan. 31, 2021 | Asia Trail keepers sprinkled blueberries around the red panda habitat; females Asa and Chris-Anne had a blast foraging for treats! Listen closely to hear Asa “twitter.” Red pandas communicate through squeals, hisses, grunts + “huff-quacks” too!
Feb. 2, 2021 | Giant panda Tian Tian had a ball in the snow today. Literally.
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Thu Feb 11, 2021 7:28 pm

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Jan. 31, 2021 | Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji encountered snow for the first time! He was nervous at first; eventually he worked up the courage to take a taste of the snow. As snow blanketed the Washington, D.C. region Jan. 31, 2021, the Smithsonian's National Zoo's animals woke up to a winter wonderland. With this weather event came another significant milestone—giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji’s first encounter with snow! Keepers say although he seemed nervous at first, eventually he worked up the courage to take a little nip at the fresh powder.
Some of Zoo's other animals having a ball in the wintry weather here. :vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/news/snow-da ... tional-zoo
Jan. 31, 2021 | Red pandas Asa and Chris-Anne explore their snowy habitat on Asia Trail.
Feb. 1, 2021 | Przewalkski's horse in the snow at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Feb. 1, 2021 | Are the snowy foothills of the Shenandoah too cold for our Przewalski's horses? Neighgative! Winters are milder at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute than in their native Gobi Desert in Mongolia, where temps can plunge to -50 degrees Fahrenheit.
Feb. 2, 2021 | Do you wanna *eat* a snowman? Our guinea pigs sure do! Amazonia keepers know enrichment (like snow) can make mealtime extra fun. Our guinea pigs dine on a variety of veggies, including lettuce, carrots and green peppers.
Feb. 2, 2021 | Field trip to Front Royal, Virginia, for a peaceful and serene snow day with our red-crowned crane pair, Tara and Prince, at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute.
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Xiao Qi Ji is quite a climber, glad they safety-ize the trees, can you find him in this s'cap? he went over to the right side of their mt. edge that cuts off and I held my breath until he moved away from it.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Fri Feb 12, 2021 8:28 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... ato-update ~ 59 seconds
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^<#PandaStory: A Short and Sweet (Potato) Update
Feb. 12, 2021

This update was written by assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson.

Happy Lunar New Year! Our 5-month-old giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji kicked off the week by enjoying a new treat Feb. 8. The panda team gave him a large, nutrient-rich biscuit to nibble on. Just like his parents—mother Mei Xiang and father Tian Tian—Xiao Qi Ji held the biscuit in his pseudo thumb while he ate.
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A pseudo thumb is an elongated and enlarged wrist bone covered with a fleshy pad of skin. This “extra” digit enables both giant pandas and red pandas to easily grasp bamboo. (Or, in Xiao Qi Ji’s case, an enrichment toy smeared with sweet potato!)
Although Xiao Qi Ji’s main source of nutrition is still Mei Xiang’s milk, he seems to have enjoyed sampling sweet potato, bamboo and biscuits over the last few weeks. He has a great appetite and gained nearly two pounds since last week. On Wednesday, our plump panda cub tipped the scales at 11.29 kilograms, or 24.8 pounds. Xiao Qi Ji is a very active cub and lately has been perfecting his running skills, chasing after Mei Xiang during play.
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We look forward to the day when Xiao Qi Ji can go outside with Mei Xiang for the first time. While the week’s wintry weather was not on our side, it did give us an opportunity to add a fun new hammock to the climbing structure in their yard. We will be sure to share the highlights of his next big milestone with you when the weather permits.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Wed Mar 03, 2021 7:09 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... ewalk-ends < 59 seconds VIDEO on this page-scroll down
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#PandaStory: Venturing Where the Sidewalk Ends
Feb. 19, 2021
This update was written by assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson and keeper Marty Dearie.

Just a few days shy of turning 6 months old, giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji accompanied his mother, Mei Xiang, into their outdoor habitat for the first time. Around 7:30 a.m. Feb. 16, we opened the door that separates their indoor and outdoor habitats. Mei Xiang made her way to a fresh pile of bamboo outside, but our cub did not follow. He was too busy playing in the den to notice that his mother left!
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We closed the door to the yard, went into the den and called Xiao Qi Ji to get his attention. He followed us onto the patio—a covered area that connects the bears’ indoor and outdoor enclosures. We stepped out of the enclosure, closed the keeper door and opened the gate to give Xiao Qi Ji access to the yard.
Much like his siblings Tai Shan, Bao Bao and Bei Bei were during their first outings, Xiao Qi Ji was cautious yet curious. Mostly, he stayed on the sidewalk at the back of the yard. Mei Xiang continued to calmly eat while her son ventured onto the grass and pawed at one of their enrichment toys. He walked along the wall of the panda house, sniffed the doors and gates and took in all the new sights and smells. Xiao Qi Ji peeked into the “howdy” window that looks into his father Tian Tian’s yard. He also tested out his climbing skills on the mesh that separates the keeper area from the bears’ yard, but he didn’t get far before he lost his grip and dropped just a few inches to the ground below.
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The whole time Xiao Qi Ji was outside, the door to their indoor habitat was open. He wandered in and out a few times, and after about 45 minutes he decided he had had enough of the outdoors and didn’t come back out. Mei Xiang shifted inside shortly thereafter, and the pair made their way to another enclosure that was filled with fresh bamboo. Even though Xiao Qi Ji stayed close to “home base,” his first outing in the yard was successful!
We are keeping a close eye on the weather and hope to give Xiao Qi Ji another opportunity to go outside soon. Lately, the temperature has been below freezing, and the precipitation conditions—sleet and snow—are not ideal for acclimating him to a new environment for an extended period of time. So, until the weather warms, he will stay inside where the temperature is a balmy 50 degrees Fahrenheit during the cooler months and 65 degrees in the warmer months.
If you are hoping to catch Xiao Qi Ji’s next trip outside on the Giant Panda Cam, tune in between 7:30 a.m. and 9 a.m. EDT. Eventually, he will spend more time outside as he becomes comfortable with exploring and navigating the outdoor habitat.
Mei Xiang heard the door open and paused her breakfast to investigate the noise. She came over to Xiao Qi Ji and spent a few moments with him on the patio, then turned and walked back to her bamboo. This time, he trotted after her.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Wed Mar 03, 2021 7:32 pm

2 x :vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... ure-awaits = 2 VIDEOS on this page scroll down
^< #1 = 33 seconds ~~ #2 = 1.35 minutes ^
2021-03-03_212620.jpg
#1 :cake: 1/2 year^ ^ click bigger, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
2021-03-03_212656.jpg
#2 :grhug: ^ ^ click bigger, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
^<
#PandaStory: Adventure Awaits!
Feb. 26, 2021


This update was written by assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson.
On Sunday, Feb. 21, giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji turned 6 months old. To celebrate, our half-birthday boy tried yet another new food: homemade applesauce. We placed a big dollop on top of one of his enrichment toys. He sniffed the sweet purée and lapped it up quickly at first. A few bites in, though, he paused and took in the taste. Unlike cooked sweet potato (which he quickly gobbled up), his reaction to the applesauce was much more tepid. It seemed as if he wasn’t sure if he liked it.
We used sweet potato to introduce Xiao Qi Ji to a new toy: a small rubber tub. Keepers smeared some sweet potato inside and, of course, that piqued his interest! At first, he was quite cautious about the tub because it kept flipping up when he put his paws on the edge and leaned on it. Eventually, he climbed inside and sat for a few moments before he dragged it back to the den, where he played with it some more.
Xiao Qi Ji is growing bigger and stronger by the day. Yesterday, he weighed 27.5 pounds (12.49 kilograms)—2.7 pounds heavier than he did Feb. 10.
2021-03-03_212602.jpg
:ohmy: ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post

If you tuned in to the Giant Panda Cam this week, you may have seen Xiao Qi Ji venture farther into the outdoor habitat than he did during his first outing last week. He is acclimating well to the great outdoors and, for the most part, explored the habitat on his own. His mother Mei Xiang accompanied Xiao Qi Ji on a few of his many “laps” around the yard but did not stick by his side. Instead, she opted to eat bamboo and checked on him from time to time.
Xiao Qi Ji had a great time climbing on the log structures and the new hammock. This seems to be his favorite hangout spot. When he reached the top of the climbing structure, it took him a while to figure out how to get down. Mei Xiang helped him down to the ground once. Apart from that instance, Xiao Qi Ji climbed down all by himself. Occasionally he took a tumble, but panda cubs are robust and have dense, wooly fur to cushion their landings.
Wednesday was filled with so much adventure and excitement that Xiao Qi Ji fell asleep in the hammock. With Mei Xiang relaxing in their indoor enclosure, keepers entered the yard, picked up the sleepy cub and brought him inside.
With much of his attention focused on the climbing structure, Xiao Qi Ji has not attempted to climb the trees in the yard yet. But, we expect that will come soon. We will continue to give him access to the yard as long as the weather is nice and relatively warm, and we have keepers available to monitor him. On those days, the best time to see him outside on the Giant Panda Cam is between 7:30 a.m. and 9 a.m. EDT.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Wed Mar 03, 2021 7:50 pm

cont....
2021-03-03_212556.jpg
:hug: ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
3-3-21  nz cub outside with mom.jpg
^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
3-3-21 nz cub climbing.jpg
^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
Photos from videos in the 1st video he seemed to enjoy his 1st applesauce, but it looked like it sort of grabbed his taste buds
& in the the 2nd video, he fell straight down in the last photo and sort of bounced on all 4's :woohoo: and then little spunky played with Mama :w00t:
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sun Apr 04, 2021 7:33 pm

2 X :vid: @ https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... d-listener
^< #1 = 1 minute video "Wrestles Log" /and #2 = 39 seconds video "Good Listener" >
2021-04-04_213556.jpg
# 1 ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
2021-04-04_213550.jpg
# 2 ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
^<#PandaStory: A Good Listener
Mar. 05, 2021
This update was written by assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson.

March 1 | This week, giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji tried a new food: banana. It was apparent from his reaction that sweet potato is still his favorite food.
2021-04-04_213523.jpg
:luck: ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post

A string of sunny days has graced the Washington, D.C. region, much to the delight of our 6-month-old giant panda cub, Xiao Qi Ji. The first thing he does when he goes outside in the morning is trot over to the wooden structure in the middle of the yard. With such a fun playground to climb, he hasn’t shown much interest in trees yet. After expending so much energy climbing, balancing, hanging and tumbling , Xiao Qi Ji often tuckers out and takes a nap on the hammock at the front of the yard. We’ve had to retrieve our sleepy cub from his favorite perch twice when it was time to come inside.
On Monday morning, Xiao Qi Ji’s mother, Mei Xiang, was ready to come inside, but he was all the way at the front of the yard. I called his name, and a few moments later he trotted up to the keeper area and followed her inside. I was so surprised he listened when I called—it was a highlight of my week!
Although Xiao Qi Ji will continue to nurse until he is around a year-and-a-half old, on Wednesday I noticed him drinking water out of the basin in Mei Xiang’s den. He has also lapped water from the free-flowing pipe in Mei Xiang’s outdoor pool. Seeing this behavior makes me wonder if Xiao Qi Ji will take after his father, Tian Tian, who enjoys splashing around in the hose when we clean. Time will tell! For now, we dropped the water in the pool for the cub’s safety.
Last week, Xiao Qi Ji’s reaction to his first taste of applesauce paled in comparison to the enthusiasm he showed for cooked sweet potato. This week, he tried some banana mushed onto a different enrichment toy. Even though he took several bites, his reaction was similar to the applesauce—he didn’t hate it, but he didn’t love it, either. It’s clear that sweet potato is still his favorite food. We had an opportunity to weigh him this week, and he continues to make good gains. He added another 1.5 pounds this week, coming in at 28.95 pounds (13.16 kilograms).
Lucky Giant Panda Cam viewers got a glimpse of Xiao Qi Ji being a bit innovative this week—he found his own enrichment toy! After spotting a small log in the enclosure, he dragged it into the den. It was the perfect size for our panda cub. Xiao Qi Ji held it close as he rolled around with it in his arms. He had a great time playing!
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sun Apr 04, 2021 8:05 pm

cont.... :grhug: H a p p y :hooray: E a s t e r ! :cloud9:
2021-04-04_213533.jpg
:thumlft: ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
As well as his birthing den, Xiao likes that back wall to sleep, and play or nurse with Mama Mei {I have also seen him climb all the way to the top of the mt. to sleep too, he is at that age of needing naps} >
4-2to4-21 xi sleeping.jpg
:offtobed: ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sun Apr 04, 2021 8:35 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... -new-sites 1.26 minute video
<^#PandaStory: Exploring New Sites ~ Mar. 19, 2021
2021-04-04_223623.jpg
^ click bigger, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post

This update was written by giant panda keeper Nicole MacCorkle.

March 9: Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji rests in a hammock in his outdoor habitat.
2021-04-04_223602.jpg
:cloud9: ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post

March 9: Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji climbs up the climbing structure in his outdoor habitat.
2021-04-04_223648.jpg
:out: ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post

As we head into spring, giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji is getting the hang of the daily routine at the Panda House. He turns 7 months old on Sunday and recently reached another milestone: on March 18, he tipped the scales at 32 pounds (14.57 kilograms)!
That excursion seemed to boost Xiao Qi Ji’s confidence! Now, he explores other areas of the yard daily—even on his own. On Tuesday, March 18, he thoroughly investigated the climbing structure beneath the hammock. Xiao Qi Ji also figured out how to use the logs as a pathway and followed them to the top of the grotto.
On a typical morning, Xiao Qi Ji spends about an hour and a half playing. All that activity tuckers him out, and our sleepy cub eventually settles in for his morning nap around 9 or 9:30 a.m. If you are trying to catch a glimpse of Xiao Qi Ji while he is active and awake, the best time to tune in to the Giant Panda Cam is between 7:30 and 9:30 a.m.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sun Apr 04, 2021 9:03 pm

cont...
2021-04-04_223722.jpg
^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
:grhug:
2021-04-04_224314.jpg
:rh: ^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
A Play Battle That Started Below Cam Range & Moved Up ~ Then Mama Mei got tired and Xiao sneaks up on her >
3-3-21 playing with Mama Mei.jpg
^ click 2X biggest, then go to return arrow on top left screen, back to post
~~~0~~~~~0~~~~~0~~ :grhug: H a p p y :hooray: E a s t e r ! :cloud9: ~~~~0~~~~~0~~
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue May 11, 2021 2:18 pm

What’s New at Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Giant Panda Viewing Details
Free Timed-Entry Passes Available Beginning May 14
May. 11, 2021
When visitors return to the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute May 21, they will find both familiar and new faces as they explore the park. Although the Zoo has been closed since Nov. 23, 2020, to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, the animal care team reported to work and provided the same level of care for their charges as any other day. Animals newly on view include giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji, Amur tiger Metis, Przewalski’s horse mother-son duo, Barbie and Cooper, Komodo dragon juvenile Onyx, Andean bear Brienne, American bison Lucy and Gally, California sea lion Charger and North American beaver Poplar, a new wallaby joey and a kudu calf. The Reptile Discovery Center will be open on the weekends, Friday through Sunday.....more at https://nationalzoo.si.edu/news/whats-n ... ng-details
2021-05-11_155808.jpg
^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue May 11, 2021 2:20 pm

{2 Videos @} :vid: #1 = 1 Minute Video > https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... ervant-cub
^<
2021-05-11_162256.jpg
^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post
:vid: #2 = 30 Seconds Video = Mei Xiang enjoys a fruitsicle while Xiao Qi Ji nibbles on bamboo >>
2021-05-11_162214.jpg
^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post
2021-05-11_160311.jpg
^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post
Apr. 30, 2021
This update was written by Asia Trail keeper Mariel Lally.

Very soon, the giant panda team will begin to train our 8-month-old cub, Xiao Qi Ji, to voluntarily participate in his own healthcare. Using positive reinforcement training, we teach our pandas behaviors that enable us to monitor their overall health and examine them up close. For example, his parents Mei Xiang and Tian Tian will present different body parts for inspection and allow Zoo veterinarians to collect a blood sample or administer vaccines, among other behaviors. Participation in these activities is always voluntary, but they know they will receive a favorite treat as a reward if they participate.
Last week, our veterinary team conducted laser therapy treatment on Mei Xiang’s left shoulder. At 22 years old, she has osteoarthritis—a degenerative disease affecting joint cartilage and the underlying bone with associated pain and stiffness. This treatment helps to ease her discomfort and improve her overall quality of life. While the veterinary technicians were at work, Xiao Qi Ji entered the training chute and watched his mother while keepers and vet staff tended to her.
Xiao Qi Ji’s favorite playmate is his mother Mei Xiang. Given the choice between playing with her or his toys, he will pick mom every time.
Mei Xiang’s favorite reward is diluted honey water, and Xiao Qi Ji had his first taste of the sweet treat that day. It was no surprise that he seemed to enjoy it and squeezed himself next to Mei Xiang in an attempt to get more! At 8 months old, he eats nearly all of the same foods that his parents eat—bamboo, sweet potato, nutrient-rich fiber biscuits, pears and apples—on a regular basis. This well-balanced diet is helping him grow big and strong. On April 28, he weighed in at 41 pounds (18.6 kilograms).
We are still learning more about Xiao Qi Ji’s personality as he grows up and becomes less reliant on Mei Xiang. However, we can say that he is very engaged with his surroundings, environment and his keepers! Some days, he seems to have his own agenda. Xiao Qi Ji spends the majority of his day outside, though occasionally he will come inside with Mei Xiang for a mid-day nap. In the outdoor habitat, he has discovered a new favorite sleeping spot. Unfortunately, it is in a tree that is difficult to see on the Giant Panda Cam. If he seems to be “missing” from the camera, he is probably up his favorite tree!
Mei Xiang enjoys a fruitsicle while Xiao Qi Ji nibbles on bamboo.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue May 11, 2021 3:06 pm

cont.
2021-05-11_162243.jpg
^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue May 11, 2021 3:13 pm

2X :vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... me-tug-war =1.01 min.& Upside Down=40 seconds
:cloud9:
4-21nz tugowar - upside down.jpg
^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post

#PandaStory: A Friendly Game of Tug-of-War
Apr. 16, 2021
This update was written by giant panda keeper Nicole MacCorkle.

One of the greatest joys of having a giant panda cub is being able to observe how he interacts with his mother, Mei Xiang. Over the past two decades, she has been a wonderful mother to cubs Tai Shan, Bao Bao, Bei Bei and now Xiao Qi Ji. Mei Xiang is equally as serious about motherhood as she is about food; regular #PandaStory update readers may remember that each of our adults receive between 70 and 100 pounds of bamboo a day to eat, depending on the time of year.
2021-05-11_171935.jpg
^ click 2X biggest~after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post~Xiao Qi Ji carries a bamboo shoot in his mouth.

In the last two weeks, we have entered bamboo shoot season. Shoots are popping up all over the Zoo! Although Xiao Qi Ji still relies mostly on Mei Xiang’s milk for his nutritional needs, we gathered a few shoots for him to try. He seemed a little unsure about them in contrast to his parents, who immediately devoured them!
No matter how Xiao Qi Ji feels about the taste of bamboo, he is certainly eager to play with it. This week, while his mother sat on the rockwork and ate, Xiao Qi Ji latched onto a stalk that she held in her paws. Mei Xiang indulged her son in a friendly game of tug-of-war for a few moments before gently pushing him away so she could finish eating.
Now that the weather is warming up, keepers are making Xiao Qi Ji-sized fruitsicles for our cub to enjoy. The recipe is very simple: just make a mixture that is half apple juice and half water, then freeze. As assistant curator Laurie Thompson shared in her April 2 update, Xiao Qi Ji is a big fan of apples, and he seemed to thoroughly enjoy these special fruitsicles!
2021-05-11_172058.jpg
^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post :hug:
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji received a new rubber kong toy this week! He liked it so much, he brought it on the scale for his weekly weigh-in. As of April 13, Xiao Qi Ji weighed 38 pounds (17.28 kilograms).
q. Xiao Qi Ji that won't help your scale #'s :giggle:
Meantime, on the other side of the David M. Rubenstein Family Giant Panda Habitat, Tian Tian is still exhibiting some rut behaviors, such as patrolling and scent marking, on some days. Lately, he has been sitting in his indoor pool, playing in the hose water with keepers, and foraging for bamboo shoots along the fence in his outdoor habitat.
q. so glad to hear about Daddy Tian, too
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue May 11, 2021 4:24 pm

3X :vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... mother-son

1:15 min. ~ 54 sec. ~ 58 sec. ~3X :hooray:
4-2-21 3 videos tub, like mom,.jpg
^ click bigger ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post

#PandaStory: Like Mother, Like Son
Apr. 02, 2021
This update was written by assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson.

Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji put his climbing skills to the test these past two weeks. This once cautious cub has become much more confident in his abilities to maneuver around the outdoor habitat.
On Mar. 21, we were surprised when mother Mei Xiang channeled her inner cub and joined Xiao Qi Ji for a climb on his favorite play structure. He seemed excited to play with her and showed off some of the climbing, hanging and tumbling skills that he has worked to perfect over the past two months. They also went for a fun roll down the hill!
Xiao Qi Ji has started climbing trees, too, including some evergreens and a ginkgo. In particular, one tree on the left side of the yard has become a new favorite napping spot. He seems to be testing out new sleeping spots inside, too. These days, he spends less time sleeping in his den and more time sleeping on the floor of his indoor habitat.
2021-05-11_181522.jpg
:offtobed: ^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post

On March 22, giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji had his first taste of apples and pears!
2021-05-11_181542.jpg
:hug: ^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post

On Mar. 22, Xiao Qi Ji added two new foods to his repertoire: apples and pears. On the spectrum of non-bamboo foods he has tried so far, these seem to fall below cooked sweet potatoes (inarguably his favorite) but above biscuits, bananas and homemade applesauce. Mei Xiang has a palate for pears, so perhaps his taste for them comes from his mom?
Our growing cub packed on four pounds since his last weigh-in. On Mar. 31, Xiao Qi Ji weighed 36 pounds (16.4 kilograms).
If you have been watching the Giant Panda Cam, you may have noticed that Xiao Qi Ji recently received some new enrichment items: a larger rubber tub in his den as well as a big plastic tub out in the yard. He seems to really enjoy climbing in and out of them. Tune in to see what adventures await him next!
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Fri May 14, 2021 3:24 pm

2X :vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... -preschool > #1 = 1 minute & #2 = 24 seconds
xoxoxoxo
5-14-21 2 videos.jpg
:cloud9: ^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post

#PandaStory: Panda Cub Preschool
May. 14, 2021
This update was written by assistant curator of giant pandas, Laurie Thompson.

May 3, 2021 | Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji eats an apple.
5-3-21 nz ji eating apple.jpg
:rh: ^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post
2021-05-14_165357.jpg
:hug: ^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post

As keeper Mariel Lally mentioned in our last #PandaStory update, giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji will soon learn a few husbandry behaviors that enable him to voluntarily participate in his own healthcare. One of the first behaviors animals learn is to “target.” We present them with a buoy on a stick, and they instinctively sniff to investigate the new, interesting object. Every time Xiao Qi Ji touches his nose to the buoy, we say “good job” and give him a treat—usually a piece of sweet potato, apple or pear. Training is completely voluntary, and at such a young age, he’s often too sleepy in the morning to participate. For now, we are familiarizing him with these objects and going at his pace.
On May 9, Xiao Qi Ji climbed up a tree and his mother, Mei Xiang, sat near the base. While he was in the canopy, he dropped some small branches and twigs onto his mother below! She seemed to relish this play behavior because she picked up the branches and scent-anointed with them.
Xiao Qi Ji is getting the hang of shifting between his indoor and outdoor enclosures. On May 10, he followed me outside all on his own and got a nice piece of cooked sweet potato as his reward.
Our growing cub continues to make good gains. On May 11, Xiao Qi Ji weighed in at 43.5 pounds (19.75 kilograms).
Recently, keepers gave Xiao Qi Ji a tub with a few inches of water inside. He climbed in, drank some water, then sat in it for a few moments before he rolled out. He seemed like he had fun playing in the tub; time will tell if he shares his father’s fondness for playing in pools and hoses when he is older.
Tian Tian is still in rut, but that will wind down over the next few weeks. Most of his attention these days is focused on bamboo shoots, which he has been enthusiastically eating!
Last but not least, we are excited to share that D.C.’s biggest celebearities are showing some panda pride for their hometown hockey team, the Washington Capitals, as they head into the NHL playoffs. Visit NationalZooPanda.com to get your paws on some new limited-edition hockey merchandise inspired by Xiao Qi Ji. Go Caps!
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Jun 08, 2021 6:12 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... s-his-fans Xiao Qi Ji Greets His Fans=1.00 min. video
^<
2021-06-08_195542.jpg
:grhug: ^ click 2X biggest ~ after clicking to view click return arrow top left back to post

#PandaStory: Xiao Qi Ji Greets His Fans
May. 28, 2021
This update was written by assistant curator of giant pandas, Laurie Thompson.
Anticipation and excitement were in the air last week, as the Smithsonian’s National Zoo reopened to the public for the first time since late November. Whenever our animal care team introduces a young animal to visitors for the first time, we try to do so gradually. That way, we can gauge their reaction and monitor how they respond to new faces, sounds and smells.
When our 9-month-old giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji made his first appearance to visitors May 21, he went about his daily routine and never skipped a beat. He napped in the canopy of his favorite tree in the morning. Then, in the early afternoon, he trotted inside the Panda House and played with his mother, Mei Xiang, while she rested on the rockwork. Of all four cubs, Xiao Qi Ji is the most reliable about coming inside for the night and regularly makes his way to the indoor habitat by 1 p.m.
Situated behind the scenes at the Panda House is an outdoor patio where we conduct husbandry training sessions. Within this area is a large scale that we use to obtain weights on Mei Xiang and Tian Tian. This week, it was Xiao Qi Ji’s turn! He stepped onto the scale and received a piece of cooked sweet potato as a reward. While he snacked on his favorite treat, we noted his weight: 45 pounds (20.7 kilograms). Then, he followed Mei Xiang through the chute and into their outdoor habitat.
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As I mentioned in my last update, Xiao Qi Ji is starting to learn the basics of husbandry training. He is quickly mastering “target”—touching his nose to a ball on the end of a dowel. As he does so, we reward him with a piece of apple or sweet potato. When we need Xiao Qi Ji to move from one space to another, we use target training to encourage him to do so on his own. This has already come in handy on several occasions when he has not followed Mei Xiang outside first thing in the morning.
As we head into Memorial Day, we look forward to seeing even more of you at the Zoo! Please note that for the safety of our animals, visitors and staff, you will need a free timed-entry or paid parking pass to enter the Zoo, as well as a separate Asia Trail/Panda Pass if you wish to see our giant panda family. We appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate this “new normal.” Remember, you can always see them on the Giant Panda Cam!
This story appears in the May 28 issue of the Giant Panda Bulletin; read previous cub updates here.
Behind these “aww’-inspiring moments, an expert team works tirelessly to provide our panda family with everything they need to thrive, ensuring a bright future for this species. If this cub sparks joy for you, please consider making a donation to the Zoo. On behalf of the animals we care for and protect: thank you!
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Jun 29, 2021 8:02 pm

2X :vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/new ... ck-learner #1 = 40 seconds~Xiao Qi Ji Devours Bamboo Shoots
^< #2 = 57 seconds Xiao Qi Ji was introduced to fruitsicles
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:hooray:
#PandaStory: A Quick Learner
Jun. 25, 2021

This update was written by giant pandas keepers Mariel Lally and Nicole MacCorkle.

A few weeks ago, we began husbandry training sessions with our 10-month-old giant panda cub, Xiao Qi Ji. At this point, he is starting to get the hang of target training! We present him with a target—a ball on the end of a dowel—and he instinctively sniffs to investigate. Whenever he touches his nose to the target, he receives a reward. Usually, it is his favorite food: cooked sweet potato!
We do this training in the indoor habitat early in the morning, after Xiao Qi Ji’s mother, Mei Xiang, has shifted outside. Our cub tends to sleep in, but if we ask him to follow the target for a treat, he will shift outside on his own.
Assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson holds a training tool, called a "target," as giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji approaches.
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji paws at a "target" (training tool) held by assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson. When he touches his nose to the target, he receives a reward!
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji touches his nose to the target, held by assistant curator of giant pandas Laurie Thompson.
Xiao Qi Ji holds a bamboo shoot.
Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji devours a tasty bamboo shoot.
Recently, Xiao Qi Ji learned a brand new behavior: stand up. To give the cue, keeper Mariel holds her hand in front of his face and points her index finger up to the sky, then slowly raises it. Xiao Qi Ji follows her finger and stands up on his hind legs. The first time he did this behavior successfully, he received a nutrient-rich biscuit and a very enthusiastic “good boy!” Like his parents, Xiao Qi Ji is a quick learner. He mastered this behavior on his second try!
Participation in training is completely voluntary, but Xiao Qi Ji seems to enjoy interacting with us. At this age, our team can safely share a space with the cub. As he continues to grow, though, that will not always be the case. Like his parents, one day Xiao Qi Ji will only interact with us through mesh.
Giant panda Mei Xiang and her son Xiao Qi Ji stand atop a scale in a chute that connects the bears' indoor and outdoor habitats.
By building his trust in us and teaching him these husbandry behaviors now, we are enabling him to voluntarily participate in his own future healthcare. The “stand up” behavior, for example, gives keepers and vets an up-close view of his torso, front legs and hind legs that we would not see if he was farther away in his habitat. This allows our animal care team to check for any lumps, bumps, scrapes or injuries that may require medical attention.
As we continue to work on “stand up” and start to introduce other husbandry behaviors at the mesh, visitors will be able to watch us interact with Xiao Qi Ji.
There’s nothing more refreshing for the giant pandas on a hot day than fruitsicles! During the last heat wave, Xiao Qi Ji was introduced to his very own, smaller version of the adults’ favorite treat. His fruitsicles are made in a smaller cup, with frozen apple juice and water. So far, he seems to really enjoy them, holding them with both his front and back paws, and closing his eyes as he relishes the refreshing treat.
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Jun 29, 2021 8:58 pm

cont....
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sat Jul 31, 2021 5:02 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... ity-shines <
^
A Panda With A Personality That Shines~51 seconds video
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#PandaStory: A Panda With A Personality That Shines
Jul. 30, 2021
This update was written by giant panda keeper Mariel Lally.
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As of July 28, 2021, Xiao Qi Ji tipped the scales at 58 pounds! In this photo, he is eating an apple.
In just three weeks, our giant panda team will celebrate a major milestone: Xiao Qi Ji’s first birthday. This past year has been a challenging one, in many respects, but watching this little cub develop into the smart, observant, inquisitive and goofy bear he is today has brought us—and fans around the world—a lot of joy.
As a keeper, much of my time is spent observing and interacting with Xiao Qi Ji. His personality is very evident! Watching him run around the habitat with a bounce to his step puts a smile on my face. Xiao Qi Ji has a knack for turning anything into a fun toy—from enrichment items, to pieces of bamboo, to sticks that he finds outside.
Our clever cub is also inquisitive. When Xiao Qi Ji investigates his environment, he tends to be more cautious than his brothers and sister were. Whether climbing up or down, he takes his time and is careful about his footing. He very rarely misses a step!
Fruitsicles are one of Xiao Qi Ji's favorite foods! These refreshing ice treats are made from a mixture of diluted fruit juice and water.
All around, Xiao Qi Ji seems to make good choices. He comes indoors (where there is air conditioning) when the heat of the day sets in. He readily comes to keepers when we call his name—a behavior known as “recalling.” Last, but not least, he has become a super star with husbandry training!
Participation in training sessions is completely voluntary, but Xiao Qi Ji almost always chooses to interact with us—especially when a sweet potato reward is involved. If you regularly follow our #PandaStory updates, you may recall that he mastered a few behaviors, including target training and climbing upon a scale. On July 28, he weighed 26.5 kilograms, or 58.3 pounds.
In my last update, I mentioned that it took Xiao Qi Ji only two tries to master standing up on his hind legs on cue. This behavior enables us to check for any limb weakness or injuries that may need veterinary attention.
Recently, we introduced a new behavior, voluntary blood draw training, which allows us to monitor his health further. Just like his parents, Mei Xiang and Tian Tian, Xiao Qi Ji follows a target into the training area. In this space, he is trained to reach his arm through a small window and hold on to a bar. We always ensure it is a fun experience and reward him with honey water from a squeeze bottle. We are still in the beginning stages of this behavior, so stay tuned for updates as he masters it!
One of my favorite memories from the past month was watching him figure out how enrichment items work. One day, I saw him lean back and hold a puzzle feeder toy above his head—the same way Mei Xiang does! It was already empty as Mei Xiang had eaten the biscuits inside (they were hers, after all), but it seemed like he tried his mom’s technique to see if there were any crumbs left.
The more we work with Xiao Qi Ji as he grows, the more he shows traits that are very similar to Mei Xiang’s. I have enjoyed seeing his personality blossom over the past year, but the best part has been watching Mei Xiang interact with her cub as he grows.
On July 22, the pair even shared a fruitsicle cake to celebrate her 23rd birthday!:cake:
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sat Jul 31, 2021 5:14 pm

cont.... :cold1:
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by JudyB » Sat Jul 31, 2021 5:28 pm

It’s so wonderful to watch him growing and exploring and learning about his world - thank you so much for bringing these updates here, queenie!

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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Sat Jul 31, 2021 5:49 pm

Thank you Judy, He is adorable and bet he is happy to have fans at the windows now, after the zoo was closed when he was younger. I noticed before he likes to sleep on the back wall, and then the Zoo said it in an update & Mama Mei clear on the other side of the mt. maybe one of them snores. :giggle: He makes me a little nervous when on top of the mt. may have a s'cap of that, standing against the wall.
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
Member since: 08/16/06 with Previous Posts: 4386

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