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What’s cuter than a giant panda? Two giant pandas
Wildlife Reserves Singapore's new stars fly in from China next month. In case you were wondering, their in-flight meals will include bamboo and fruit
Breaking news, giant panda fans.
Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS) just announced it’s getting two of the adorable black-and-white bears from China, an acquisition that's expected to heavily boost visitor numbers. (Fact: in the zoo game, there's no bigger cash cow than a panda.)
Named Kai Kai (male) and Jia Jia (female), the giant pandas will arrive from China's Ya’an Bifengxia Panda Base on September 6. They’ll be housed at the Yangtze River zone of the upcoming River Safari, along with other endangered wildlife from China such as the giant salamander and the red panda.
However the logistics required to safely fly a pair of pandas through the region are a bit complicated.
Wildlife Reserves officials said the pandas will be transported on board a Singapore Airlines Cargo Boeing 747 freighter.
“To ensure that the giant pandas are comfortable during their five-hour flight, the aircraft’s temperature will be set to the bears’ natural habitat conditions and ‘in-flight meals’ will also be provided in the form of bamboo, fruit and water," said WRS officials.
More on CNN: Should we bother trying to save the panda?
The pandas, accompanied by a team of keepers and vets, will be transported in special crates with ventilation and enough space that they can move about in relative comfort.
Panda display set to open in December
After landing, Kai Kai and Jia Jia will be moved into a temperature-controlled truck for their journey to River Safari.
There, they'll be moved into their den block to begin a month-long quarantine before being released into their exhibit to explore and familiarize themselves with their new surroundings before going on public display in December.
The giant pandas will stay in Singapore for 10 years as part of a joint collaboration between the China Wildlife Conservation Association and WRS to raise public awareness on wildlife conservation and develop a breeding program.
More on CNN: 'One panda is worth 10 of our lives'