Panda Updates – Monday, September 30
A huge benefit of being a zoo accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) is that we can look to other AZA-accredited organizations and learn from them. We have our own set of practices and enrichment items in place here at Zoo Atlanta for the giant pandas, but there is always room to learn more! A while back I saw our colleagues at Smithsonian’s National Zoo post a video of one of their giant pandas self-anointing and playing in some wood shavings. After seeing how much their pandas enjoyed it, I thought it might be something fun to try out with Yang Yang, Lun Lun and the twins. So, after getting approval from our Veterinary Team, Yang Yang was the first to get to try out the new enrichment. We placed some shavings in a behind-the-scenes den area and gave him access to it. He almost immediately came over and started rolling and throwing the shavings around. He continued to go back to the shavings for about 10 minutes to play in them! We will definitely be trying out this enrichment with the other giant pandas, and hopefully they like it just as much as Yang Yang did. As an animal care professional, one of my most favorite things is to watch the animals enjoy the enrichment we provide for them. It’s safe to say Yang Yang definitely put a smile on my face today! Go check out a video on the Zoo’s Instagram or Facebook page!
Keeper II, Mammals