Bei Bei Is Safe And Recovering

Animals |

Panda’s are bears that are native to the mountain forests of southwest China. It is a symbol of China and one of the most beloved animals on the planet. They are distinctive for their beautiful black and white coloring. Their ears, eyes, muzzle, legs and shoulders are black while the remainder of the body is white. They have thick hair to keep them warm in the cool, wet mountainous region. There are now only 2060 pandas living in the wild. They are considered vulnerable of extinction by the IUCN. Habitat destruction is the number one reason for this decline, this leads to food shortages which increases the risk of starvation and makes it more difficult for Panda’s to healthily reproduce.

This is a story about a Panda in distress and had emergency surgery over Thanksgiving. Bei Bei is a giant panda cub who is a star attraction at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington, D.C., had emergency surgery on Friday due to a “lemon-sized mass of bamboo” stuck in his digestive tract. He is currently out of surgery and stable. The 1-year-old panda is the youngest of the zoo's four giant pandas. He started showing signs of stomach discomfort and nausea on Thanksgiving Day. He was sleeping much more than usual and had lost his appetite for his favorite food, bamboo.

Veterinarians gave him an ultrasound on Friday morning. This revealed a life-threatening blockage in his small intestine. A volunteer veterinary surgeon performed the operation to remove the dense, masticated mass of bamboo. The mass was preventing intestinal movement. "Bei Bei’s prognosis is very good,” zoo director Dennis Kelly said in a statement.

The 90-pound cub was an internet sensation even before his birth on August 22, 2015. People from around the world monitored his mother's pregnancy on the zoo's "panda cam" in anticipation and excitement of his arrival at the Washington zoo. He was so famous that First lady Michelle Obama and Peng Liyuan, the first lady of China, selected the name Bei Bei, or "Precious," for the cub from a list of suggestions from the staff of the National Zoo and a panda reserve in China. As part of the zoo’s breeding agreement with the China Wildlife Conservation Association, all cubs born at the National Zoo move to China by the time they turn 4, where they will live free and hopefully prosper among these decimating wildlife conditions.

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Meaghan Thomson

Senior Writer

Meaghan received her BS in Political Science from San Francisco State University. She has been a vital team member in our growth and now leads a team of writers in creating stories that will engage and keep our readers coming back. She is the first one in and last one out which gives her time to finish her tasks and be available to help her team.