Panda Updates – Friday, April 5
Just like humans, giant pandas can develop tastes for new things over time. Just because one giant panda loves something doesn’t necessarily mean another will. We see this a lot with enrichment preferences, as well as food items we offer. Most of you know that Xi Lun doesn’t like sugarcane like most other pandas do, but she will occasionally steal a piece of Ya Lun’s if she is convinced it’s better than what she has. Lun Lun recently decided that sweet potatoes weren’t so bad after over 19 years of not wanting to eat them when given the choice to. Due to her recent change of heart towards sweet potatoes, we thought it would be interesting to offer her a green apple as enrichment today. All of the giant pandas, and Idgie the red panda, receive red apples as a part of their daily diet here at Zoo Atlanta. However, Lun Lun has chosen not to eat green apples in the past when given the opportunity to. Most of us guessed that it probably had something to do with the tart taste of green apples compared with the red ones they normally receive, but Yang Yang has always eaten them just fine. Well, as if Lun Lun doesn’t like to keep us on our toes enough, she gobbled up a green apple the second it was offered to her. So fast, in fact, that I didn’t even have a chance to get a picture! Yang Yang is slower about eating than Lun Lun is, so I managed to catch one of him enjoying his treat.
Keeper II, Mammals
(photo by Danica W.)