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Panda Updates – Monday, December 11

Hi panda fans! My name is Erin, and while I am new to the giant panda area, I have been a carnivore keeper here at Zoo Atlanta for the last seven years. As most of you know, the panda area is part of the Carnivore Department, and most keepers are trained to work in both the panda and meat-eating carnivore areas. Scheduling has finally opened up an opportunity for me to see how the panda side lives, and it has been quite an interesting experience. Since I have worked in my primary area for so long, I think it’s fair to say that I know the routine and animals very well. I have helped train several keepers and many interns, and it has been quite a while since I have been the one actually being trained. The routines and animals and all the little details (like species of bamboo – ugh!) are definitely different, and I have absolutely had times where I have had to have the other keepers, and even the interns, talk me through what was going on. I have enjoyed getting to spend time with the pandas and am starting to understand the routine a bit more each day. It’s been a learning experience for sure, and I look forward to spending more time with the pandas and getting the routine down.

I do have to say though that I miss those meat-eaters. If for no other reason than the fact that they poop less than pandas! And while the pandas are certainly very cute, I am still partial to Sabah, our female sun bear. I keep being told that Yang Yang will steal my heart though, so I guess time will tell…
Erin D.
Keeper II, Mammals

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