Edinburgh Zoo pandas back on display after failure

The outdoor viewing area for Yang Guang, above, and Tian Tian is to be reopened. Picture: Ian Georgeson
The outdoor viewing area for Yang Guang, above, and Tian Tian is to be reopened. Picture: Ian Georgeson
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Giant pandas Tian Tian and Yuan Guang are to go back on public display after Edinburgh Zoo confirmed that the female is no longer pregnant.

With the date of an expected delivery past by over three weeks, it had been suspected that Tian Tian had suffered a miscarriage after falling pregnant.

Iain Valentine, Director of the Giant Panda Project: said: “Tian Tian’s hormone levels have now returned to normal, so we can confirm that she is no longer pregnant. Panda reproduction and biology is complex; all data gathered since conception took place pointed to a pregnant panda likely to carry to full term, sadly this did not happen. There is no evidence she has had a miscarriage, so late reabsorption of the foetus could have occurred.

“Although Tian Tian has not successfully given birth, it is important for her individual biology as a female giant panda and for the future of giant panda conservation across the globe that we tried. We will also be reviewing all our data and procedures from this year and last.

“The team continue to monitor Tian Tian and she is in great health. The specialist team here and international colleagues will thoroughly review every aspect of how we care for her.

“From today we will be opening the outdoor viewing area of Tian Tian and Yang Guang’s enclosures at Edinburgh Zoo; pre-booking to view the pandas over the first week will not be required – walk-up tickets will be issued on the day; however, we would recommend you book online using the normal booking system from the afternoon of Monday 22 September if you are visiting between the 29 September and 31 October.”