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The Ueno Zoological Gardens in Tokyo unveiled a plan Friday to loan its only giant panda, Ling Ling, to a Mexican zoo in order to carry out a third breeding attempt, following two previous failures.

Ling Ling, a 17-year-old male, will depart Monday for Chapultepec Zoo in Mexico City and will stay there until April, Ueno Zoo officials said.

The Mexican zoo will try to mate Ling Ling with three females there, but may also try artificial insemination. , they said.

Ling Ling went to Chapultepec Zoo between January 2001 and April the same year, and again between November 2001 and April.

Ueno Zoo officials said the breeding program is a joint project involving their Mexican counterparts. Ling Ling is the only remaining giant panda at Ueno Zoo, following the death in July 2000 of Tong Tong, a female.

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