Four giant pandas from China, including Er Shun and Da Mao, as well as their twin offspring born in Toronto, named Jia Yueyue and Jia Panpan, who moved from Toronto to Calgary not long ago, made their inaugural appearance at the Giant Panda House of Calgary Zoo at about noon local time on the 7th. More than 200 representatives from all over China and Canada participated in the opening ceremony of the Giant Panda House. Lu Shaye, a Chinese Ambassador to Canada; Rachel Notley, the Governor of Alberta; Lois Mitchell, Lieutenant Governor of Alberta; Naheed Nenshi, mayor of Calgary; and others together cut the ribbon at the opening ceremony of the Giant Panda House in the Calgary Zoo.
Giant Panda House’s First Resident Pandas After Six Years of Painstaking Preparation
Dr. Clement Lanthier, Director and CEO of the Calgary Zoo said: “The arrival of the giant panda family was a long and painful wait but brought about rich rewards. We spent six years preparing to welcome these giant pandas and tens of thousands of visitors. The value of receiving these internationally-protected animals lies in providing our community with a great opportunity to understand that every one of us can contribute to the wild animals in Canada, even the world.”
In order to welcome this big family of cuddly pandas, the Calgary Zoo has invested nearly USD 100 million to refurbish and repair the Giant Panda House and its surrounding area. Analysts said that the Calgary Zoo is expected to welcome up to 1.5 million tourists (up 25% year-on-year) in the first year the pandas are there, which may lead to an additional USD 18 million in revenue for the city.
Calgary Held Panda Photo Exhibition
To celebrate the Da Mao family’s move, make information about giant panda protection accessible to the public, and deepen mutual understanding between the peoples of China and Canada, the event named “My Home, Our Community—Panda Conservation & International Cooperation Photo Exhibition”, hosted by the Consulate General of the People's Republic of China in Calgary, and State Forestry and Grassland Administration and undertaken by the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding kicked off at the Calgary Municipal Complex Atrium on April 27. More than 200 people attended the opening ceremony, including the local government, enterprises and media outlets, such as Lu Xu, Consul General in Calgary; Naheed Nenshi, mayor of Calgary; Jamie Kleinsteuber and Ric McIver; senators of Alberta, Sean Chu, councilor of Calgary; and Lorne Motley, Editor-in-Chief of the Calgary Herald. Representatives of overseas Chinese, Chinese-funded institutions, and delegations in Calgary also attended the event. They shared a common understanding of China’s efforts and contributions to the protection of giant pandas. At the opening ceremony, local Chinese artists displayed the traditions of China, including paper cutting, tea art, clay figurines, calligraphy, and painting.