UBUD, Indonesia – Two giant pandas from Wolong National Nature Reserve in central China arrived on Thursday at a safari zoo on the Indonesian island of Java.
Cai Tao and Hu Chun, both seven-years-old and weighing 128 and 113 kilograms (282 and 249 pounds), respectively, were accompanied by a Chinese veterinarian, and landed in Jakarta after a six-hour flight.
The Taman Safari Indonesia zoo spokesperson told EFE that the pandas arrived healthy, and the zoo has prepared a 4,800 square meter (51,666 sq feet) enclosure in a location that is 1,300 meters above sea level where they are expected to live for at least a decade.
The air conditioned space has four covered cages and is housed within a 10-hectare (24.7 acres) bamboo plantation, which along with the height above sea level, will help the pandas acclimatize without any difficulty.
Visitors to Taman Safari will be able to meet the pandas as soon as the quarantine period ends.
Indonesia is the 16th country in the world and the fourth in Southeast Asia to receive a loan from China to raise giant pandas.
Dubbed “panda diplomacy,” the loaning of giant pandas began in 1984, when this species was declared endangered.
In 2016, the International Union for Conservation of Nature had removed the panda from its list of endangered species and classified it as vulnerable, the stage before extinction, owing to the increase in its population over the past few years.
However, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora continues to include the giant panda among endangered species.