FedEx Panda Express will take to the skies with precious cargo - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

FedEx Panda Express will take to the skies with precious cargo

Da Mao Da Mao
Er Shun Er Shun

(WMC-TV) - The FedEx Panda Express will take to the skies for this sixth time in the spring as it moves two giant pandas from China to the Toronto Zoo. In addition to FedEx Express playing a big role in the move, the Memphis Zoo will also play an important part.

A 5-year-old female panda named Er Shun, and a 4-year-old male panda named Da Mao will be VIPs on a charter flight to Toronto.

"These rare animals are beautiful symbols of China and represent the truest definition of ‘precious cargo' for the FedEx team," said Lisa Lisson, president, FedEx Express Canada.

Since bamboo does not grow well in Canada, the Memphis Zoo will help out by sending regular shipments of bamboo to the Toronto Zoo from its farm at the Agricenter. The zoo will begin by sending multiple species of bamboo in order to figure out which type Er Shun and Da Mao prefer.

According to experts, adult pandas eat about 100 pounds of bamboo per day. The Memphis Zoo will ship about 700 pounds of bamboo two or three times each week via FedEx.

"We not only have a successful giant panda program at the Memphis Zoo, but we also have an abundance of bamboo thanks to the warmer climate," said Dr. Chuck Brady, president and CEO of the Memphis Zoo. "Donating our expertise and resources, with the help of FedEx, reinforces the strength of our new zoo partnerships, and helps further the ongoing research designed to protect and breed these endangered animals."

The two giant pandas will spend five years at the Toronto Zoo, followed by another five years at the Calgary Zoo.

"The Toronto Zoo is proud to team with a global company that has participated in international efforts to conserve this important species," said John Tracogna, CEO, Toronto Zoo.

This is the sixth flight the FedEx Panda Express will make. Here is a look at past flights:

  • China to Paris, France (2012)
  • China to Edinburgh, Scotland (2011)
  • Washington, D.C., and Atlanta, Georgia, to China (2010)
  • China to Memphis, Tennessee. (2003)
  • China to Washington, D.C. (2000)

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