TER MM Tian Tian

Edinburgh Zoo, realising that we are all losing a little heart perhaps, has issued an update on the is she isn’t she debate about the Giant Panda Tian Tian.

“Panda breeding is not a precise science and combined with this each animal has their own individual biology – and Tian Tian is definitely not a text book panda!

“Whilst Tian Tian continues to behave like she’s pregnant and whilst her hormones, behaviour and physical changes suggest the same, we will continue to manage her accordingly; as soon as we know otherwise we will of course announce this. To put it into context, there are no experts around the world who can say definitively how long a giant panda pregnancy is.

“It is really difficult to tell if a female panda is pregnant and when she will give birth, mainly due to pseudo and lost pregnancies that occur with this species and that they can practice delayed implantation. Unfortunately the results from predictive tests used in panda zoos around the world to determine pregnancy can only be understood historically and as time goes on and more results become available we build up a fuller picture of when Tian Tian could give birth; we are still within timings.

“A large number of cutting edge scientific tests are still in their infancy – in fact Tian Tian is only the third panda many of these have been trialled on.”

Meanwhile Washington Zoo which does have a panda cub has had to turn off the pandacam owing to the US Government shutdown. Locals are said to be in uproar.

We do have a pandacam, but the footage is prerecorded.