MEMPHIS ZOO DETECTS GIANT PANDA FETUS DURING ULTRASOUND
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - An ultrasound on the Memphis Zoo's female giant panda
Ya Ya this afternoon showed that she is pregnant. A giant panda fetus
was detected in the womb.
"We are excited about the results of Ya Ya's latest ultrasound," said
Memphis Zoo President and CEO Chuck Brady. "Things couldn't be going any
better, but we are also still aware that she is at a critical point in
The ultrasound provided positive identification of one embryonic sac
that contains a panda fetus. The 25-minute procedure also revealed that
the cub appears to be growing well.
Dr. George Flynn, a friend of the Zoo and leading expert in the field of
ultrasound technologies and procedures, performed the procedure.
The cub will likely be born by the end of June.
Ya Ya, the Memphis Zoo's 6-year-old female panda, has been showing
behavior typical of pregnancy in weeks past. Her appetite has decreased,
she has been more restless and irritable, and she has spent more time in
Zoo staff now monitors Ya Ya 24 hours a day. She is in her maternity den
and has access to her dayroom, or on-exhibit area. She will continue to
receive 24-hour support by Zoo staff throughout the term of her
Closer to the birth of the cub, Ya Ya will likely spend a lot more time
alone and settle into the "tree" in her maternity den. The tree, which
is equipped with an infrared camera, is a replica of where a giant panda
would give birth in the wild.
When the cub is born, the mother and cub will be off exhibit in the
maternity den for three to four months. The Memphis Zoo would work
closely with China to plan the naming ceremony when the cub turns 100
The only way Ya Ya and her cub will be viewed will be on the panda Web
cam at memphiszoo.org and on live monitors in the Zoo's CHINA exhibit.
About the Memphis Zoo
The Memphis Zoo, located in Memphis, Tenn., is home to more than 3,500
animals representing over 500 different species. The Zoo was founded in
1906 and resides on 70 acres in the middle of Overton Park. The Memphis
Zoo has completed over $77 million in renovation and expansion since the
early 1990s, making it one of the finest zoological parks in the nation.
The Zoo's animal inhabitants reside in one-of-a-kind exhibitry, such as
Northwest Passage, Commercial Appeal Cat Country, Primate Canyon,
Dragon's Lair, Animals of the Night and CHINA - home to giant pandas Ya
Ya and Le Le. The Memphis Zoo is an accredited member of the American
Zoo and Aquarium Association. Memphis Zoo, Ya Ya and Le Le are
trademarks of the Memphis Zoo.