• Jiji


Tokyo’s Ueno Zoo on Saturday said it has confirmed that its male panda, Ri Ri, and his female partner, Shin Shin, mated for the first time since February 2017.

Ri Ri began to show signs of being in heat in November last year, while similar signs were seen for Shin Shin from late last month.

The pandas were put in the same enclosure Saturday after showing strong signs of being in heat, such as calling to each other many times, during their meeting over a fence. Their mating lasted 65 seconds, the zoo said.

The zoo will study their behavior in an effort to best time the next attempt. Staff will also monitor Shin Shin to see if she becomes pregnant.

Following the previous mating, Shin Shin gave birth to Xiang Xiang in June 2017.

“We hope breeding will be successful this time again,” a zoo official said.

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