It was a banner day in September 1996 when a small jet touched down in San Diego delivering precious cargo: Bai Yun and Shi Shi, two giant pandas from Wolong Panda Preserve in China. Thus began a multi-year breeding loan and the illustrious celebrity of the beloved bear, Bai Yun.
Besides being breathtakingly lovely, even with her mouth full of bamboo, she has been an exemplary mother to all six of her cubs, beginning with the birth of Hua Mei in 1999. This was the first surviving panda cub born in the US, and she created her own brand of “pandamonium” at the Zoo. With Bai Yun’s behaviors, habits, and endearing willingness to cooperate in all kinds of projects, she has been teaching researchers a great deal about panda reproduction and physiology. She has also become famous around the world: a star on Panda Cam, a sensation on YouTube, and a celebrity to all her millions of fans. For a black-and-white bear, Bai Yun sure leads a colorful life!