Tags: bao bao | panda | china

Bao Bao, National Zoo's Beloved Panda, Leaves DC for China

Image: Bao Bao, National Zoo's Beloved Panda, Leaves DC for China

Giant panda Bao Bao naps in her outdoor habitat at the Smithsonian's National Zoo Feb. 21, 2017, in Washington, D.C. Bao Bao departed for Chengdu, China, on Tuesday as part of a cooperative breeding program between the National Zoo and the China Wildlife Conservation Association. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

By    |   Tuesday, 21 Feb 2017 06:53 PM

Bao Bao, the beloved giant panda at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., has begun her journey to China where she will participate in a breeding program.

Bao Bao is traveling on a FedEx airplane that has been customized for her. One of her keepers, Marty Dearie, and a veterinarian also are on board, along with 60 pounds of bamboo and food as well as letters from well-wishers sad to see her go, ABC News reported.

The zoo and the China Wildlife Conservation Association have a cooperative breeding program that requires all giant pandas born at the National Zoo to move to China before age 4, ABC reported. Bao Bao is 3 and a half.

The flight is expected to take 16 hours, according to the zoo’s website.

Once the panda reaches China, she has to be quarantined for 30 days, then will prepare to enter the breeding program. Giant pandas are endangered, and the program is intended to increase the population.

Bao Bao was born at the National Zoo in 2013 and many have watched her grow via a running live video feed of the zoo's pandas.

The hashtag #ByeByeBaoBao was trending on Twitter Tuesday as users wished Bao Bao well.

 

 

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Bao Bao, the beloved giant panda at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., has begun her journey to China where she will participate in a breeding program.
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2017-53-21
Tuesday, 21 Feb 2017 06:53 PM
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