Panda enclosure ‘best in the world’

AMPANG: Zoo Negara’s Giant Panda Conservation and Exhibition Centre is the “biggest and best in the world”, according to Zoo Negara deputy president Rosly Rahmat Ahmat Lana.

“The panda centre has a very unique design where visitors and the pandas are in one room. This open concept enables visitors to feel the coldness of the air inside the enclosure and experience the panda’s natural habitat,” he said.

The enclosure will be kept at a temperature of 15°C to 22°C.

Visitors can have an up-close and personal experience with Fu Wa and Feng Yi in a month’s time when the centre is opened to the public.

However, visitors who want to enter the enclosure will have to pay a fee of RM10 for children and RM20 for adults.

“When the panda centre is open, 150 visitors will be allowed into the enclosure at one time. There will be viewing sessions every 20 minutes,” said Zoo Negara administration director Shahril Shariff.

“We are expecting as many as 3,800 visitors a day on weekends and public holidays, and around 1,000 on normal days within the first year of the pandas’ arrival,” he said.

Junaidi Omar of Zoo Negara’s education department said the arrival of the pandas will mark the end of months of preparation.

“We sent our bamboo species to China to test if our Malaysian supply is suitable for the pandas.

“We found that the pandas like the pagar and madu bamboo. They also eat betong bamboo,” said Junaidi.

The two pandas, Fu Wa and Feng Yi, from the Bifengxia panda base in Ya’an, China, will be quarantined in their enclosure for a month for them to familiarise themselves with the Malaysian climate and their surroundings.

The opening ceremony of the panda centre will be held some time between June 23 and 25.

Related stories:

Pair get special MM2H certs

Feng Yi and Fu Wa fly first class

‘Mum’ thrilled to have Feng Yi staying in Malaysia

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