Kobe Zoo Delays Sending Elderly Panda Back to China for 1 Year

A female panda at a zoo in Kobe will have her return to China delayed for another year as she undergoes medical treatment. Tan Tan, the oldest panda in Japan at 28 years old, which translates to her 80s in human years, has been showing signs of decreased appetite and activity since last fall, as reported by Oji Zoo.

Tan Tan was brought to the zoo from China in 2000 for breeding purposes, and was originally scheduled to be sent back in July 2020 at the end of her lease agreement. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic and the need for treatment of age-related cardiac disease, her return was postponed.

After discussions with Chinese authorities, the zoo has decided to further delay Tan Tan’s return beyond the end of this month in order to continue her checkups and treatment. The risks of transportation also factored into this decision.

Due to her health condition, Tan Tan has not been on public display at the zoo since spring 2022.

The zoo is hoping for the panda’s speedy recovery, with preparations in place for her eventual return to China. According to zoo officials, Tan Tan’s well-being remains their top priority, and they are committed to providing her with the necessary care and treatment.

The current delay in Tan Tan’s return marks the latest chapter in the panda’s story, and as she continues to receive medical attention, her keepers and caretakers are dedicated to supporting her every step of the way.

© KYODO

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