Bai Yun: 20th Birthday

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Bai Yun is a laid-back mama.

Today, Bai Yun turns 20 years old. Can you believe it? She doesn’t look a day over 12, at least in my eyes! I still remember when she arrived here at the San Diego Zoo as a five year old back in 1996. Beautiful and busy, she was a joy to watch for all of us. And she still is!

We couldn’t let her special day go by without doing something special for an animal that has represented her species so well. Bai Yun has seen her share of elaborate panda birthday celebrations. Yet her long-time keeper, Kathy Hawk, describes Bai Yun as a laid-back, down-to-earth mama these days. So in keeping with a low-key theme, Kathy has been preparing a “homemade” ice cake. It will feature layers of Bai’s favorite apple, carrot, and honey slush, with food-colored ice cubes on top.

Kathy and crew will set the cake out in the north exhibit during Bai Yun’s noon feeding time today. Please come by to wish our birthday girl many happy returns!

Debbie Andreen is a blog moderator for the San Diego Zoo. Read her previous post, Elephant Calf Has a Name!

Here’s Bai Yun with her birthday cake!