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FOUR RED PANDAS EACH PUT ON ONE KG AND ADAPTING WELL TO OCEAN PARK HONG KONG

2009-04-16

(16 APRIL – HONG KONG) Tai Shan (translation: Tarzan,) Rou Rou (translation: gentle,) Cong Cong (translation: smart,) and Li Zi (translation: chestnut,) the four red pandas that are undergoing acclimatization and quarantine at Ocean Park since their arrival from Chengdu, China on 22 March, are growing well and adapting to their new environment. The two males, Cong Cong and Tai Shan, now weigh 4.9 kg and 4.8 kg, while their mates, Li Zi and Rou Rou, weigh 4.2 kg and 3.8 kg, respectively. The public debut for the red pandas, as well as their neighbours, giant pandas Le Le and Ying Ying, the Chinese salamanders, the Chinese alligators, the small-clawed otters, birds, and turtles, has been set for 30 April, when the Amazing Asian Animals attraction zone opens. (See Fact Sheet for details on the vital statistics of the red pandas)

Currently, Ocean Park’s animal trainers are conducting a host of enrichment training for the pandas. According to the Senior Curator for Terrestrial Life Sciences, Howard Chuk, the red pandas show intense interest in “target practice.” Mr Chuk said, “They are now able to step onto the scale to have their weight taken at the stroke of our target baton. The act of them stepping onto the scale naturally allows the trainers to take accurate measurements. This is part of our husbandry training to help assess their health and enable us to provide the best practice of care to the red pandas.”

Mr Chuk said that the trainers are also carrying out voice-and-noise recognition training for the red pandas. Additionally, the red pandas are getting to know their counterparts better as the trainers gradually pair them up within the same space. “The red pandas recognise and interact with one another through their individual scent and we have observed them to leave their scent markings all over their temporary habitat!”

He continued, “Our veterinarians have been conducting regular check-ups for the red pandas, and all four of them passed the tests with flying colours.”

Mr Chuk also said that the red pandas are very active, and spend lots of time playing on the climbing structures.

Currently, their diet consists mainly of bamboo, with each red panda consuming three to five kgs each day. The keepers also feed the red pandas milk, wo wo tou (steamed high-fibre “buns”) and biscuits, all of which will provide the necessary nutrients for growth.

The Red Panda Husbandry Supervisor from the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, Zhuo Guifu, who is in Hong Kong for a month to pass on his care expertise to the Ocean Park team, said, “The red pandas are making great progress in their acclimatization and growth. The public should take to these lovely red pandas immediately once the guests can see them up close.”

Amazing Asian Animals is the first major attraction in Ocean Park’s $5.5 billion Master Redevelopment Project to be completed. The area will feature eight unique attractions including Giant Panda Adventure, an impressive habitat for rare species such as the giant panda, red panda, Chinese giant salamander, Asian small-clawed otter and Chinese alligator. Meanwhile, the stand-alone exhibit, Goldfish Treasures, will feature exclusively over 300 goldfish collection of all shapes, sizes and colours, including the largest goldfish variety in the world. The Amazing Bird Show will also return with a new facade. The other attractions will include Panda Village, and the Wishing Tree. Opening in the summer will be Emerald Trail and the Suspension Bridge.

To give guests a totally immersive experience in this area, Amazing Asian Animals will also present the future Waterfront (currently the Lowland) area’s first dining and banquet facility – Panda Cafe – which features a host of popular Southeast Asian dishes, including signature Sichuan cuisines, and the Park’s first themed and largest signature souvenir shop, Panda Kingdom Shop, which is brimming with over 5,000 animal-themed items in over 350 styles.

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Vital Statistics Of The Red Pandas

 

Body Weight Of The Red Pandas When They First Arrived At Ocean Park KG

Current Weight
(KG)

Body Length
(CM)

Tai Shan

3.9

4.8

61

Li Zi

3.1

4.2

61

Cong Cong

4.0

4.9

65

Rou Rou

2.8

3.8

60

About Ocean Park

Ocean Park is Hong Kong’s unique homegrown recreational venue with a heritage of delivering family fun and fond memories. Since its opening in January 1977 as a non-profit organisation, Ocean Park has developed itself to be a world-class attraction connecting people with nature, and recognised for its animal husbandry, research and relationship with the community. Over 90 million people have visited Hong Kong's premier park since its inception and Ocean Park has remained committed to offering adults and children experiences that blend entertainment with education and conservation. Part of the proceeds from the Ocean Park admission tickets and some retail items will go to Ocean Park Conservation Foundation, Hong Kong to support its wildlife conservation projects.

Tai Shan (Right) and Li Zi resting after much food and activity
Tai Shan (Right) and Li Zi resting after much food and activity
The curious-looking Cong Cong (Front) and Li Zi, resting on the climbing structure.
The curious-looking Cong Cong (Front) and Li Zi, resting on the climbing structure.
Cong Cong is enjoying his favourite bamboo shoot.
Cong Cong is enjoying his favourite bamboo shoot.
Red pandas are also known as "fire foxes." Here - a red ball of fire. (Rou Rou)
Red pandas are also known as "fire foxes." Here - a red ball of fire. (Rou Rou)