SINGAPORE: Giant pandas Jia Jia and Kai Kai will be making their public debut on November 29 at the River Safari.
The exhibit is opening for a special preview in time for the year—end school holiday.
Keepers say the furry creatures are healthy, happy and have settled in well. They were moved into the exhibit about three weeks ago.
Jia Jia, who is five years old, only got comfortable enough to start eating in her new surroundings three days after the move, while four—year—old Kai Kai started eating almost immediately.
Mr Ang Cheng Chye, the assistant director of zoology at River Safari, said: "The main concern initially was getting them to feed on our locally grown bamboo. They’re now eating at least two out of the four species, so that’s quite good."
Keepers said that their personalities are distinctly different.
"(The) most exciting part would probably be seeing Jia Jia in the water. She just jumped in and soaked herself even though it was quite cold. Kai Kai on the other hand, he would just dip a toe in and he’ll withdraw it because it’s too cold. So far he hasn’t been down in the pool once," said Mr Ang.
The panda exhibit is in the upcoming tourist attraction River Safari, which is scheduled to open in early 2013.
To prevent over—crowding, the River Safari said visitors will be split into groups for 15—minute viewings available throughout the day till 6.00pm.
Visitors can meet the giant pandas by buying a ticket to the Singapore Zoo and adding a top—up fee of S$5 for adults and S$3 for children between three and 12 years old.
Also on display are a pair of red pandas and golden pheasants.
The temperature at the panda exhibit will be around 18 to 22 degrees Celsius, so visitors are advised to come prepared with warm clothing.
Tickets will be sold daily from 8.30am, starting November 29.
For a sneak peek for what’s in store, take a look at
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