Shanghai zoo panda deaths spark outrage

By Zhao Yusha Source:Global Times Published: 2017/1/19 15:13:39

Chinese netizens expressed their outrage after a Shanghai zoo announced on Thursday that two pandas died in December 2016, and slammed the zoo for exhibiting the pandas despite their illness.

The Shanghai Wildlife Park announced on its Sina Weibo on Thursday that 21-year-old panda Guo Guo died on December 26, 2016 because of acute pancreatitis and multiple organ failure.

The mother panda was quarantined for treatment on December 19 shortly after she showed symptoms of fever, vomiting, diarrhea, stomachache and discharged intestinal mucus.

Following the announcement, netizens who have visited the zoo blamed it for the pandas' deaths.

"I went to the Shanghai Wildlife Park in December and Hua Sheng was clearly sick. Why did you insist on exposing her to the public?" said a Net user codenamed "yimiaoyishijie."

Many also wondered why the zoo announced the deaths about a month later.

Shanghai Daily quoted park employee Ni Li as saying that a joint pathological analysis with the China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda caused the belated announcement.

"We feel very sad for the two pandas' deaths, and face great pressure now," Ni was quoted as saying.

An anonymous employee of the park told the Global Times on Thursday that they received a lot of attention since they made the announcement, and they already investigated the tragedy and will try to prevent future incidents.

But she denied any wrongdoings in breeding the pandas.

"Our employees and animal keepers took good care of these animals, but keeping giant pandas is not a easy task" said the employee.

More than 300 giant pandas are being raised in zoos and breeding centers in China, a number that has more than doubled from 164 to 375, news outlet reported.

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