National Zoo plans to breed pandas using artificial insemination


Scientists from the National Zoo journeyed to China to prepare for this year’s giant panda breeding season. According to zoo reps, they arrived back in D.C. on Monday night with frozen panda semen from a giant panda based in China. The zoo is planning on performing an artificial insemination procedure on a female giant panda named Mei Xiang. Mei Xiang is expected to go into estrus soon. This is the first time semen has been specially transported from China for breeding purposes at the National Zoo. The frozen semen sample comes from a male panda named Hui Hui. The zoo research team decided that a cub sired by Hui Hui would be more genetically beneficial than a cub sired by the National Zoo’s male Tian Tian. Hui Hui has yet to sire any cubs.


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