Visitors flocked to Ueno Zoological Gardens in Tokyo on Thursday as the viewing time to see giant panda cub Xiang Xiang and her mother Shin Shin increased to seven hours daily.
Since Xiang Xiang first went on display to the public on Dec 19, the zoo has limited the number of visitors to 2,000 lottery winners per day during a 2 1/2-hour period to ensure the pandas were not caused too much stress. Xiang Xiang was born last June 12 and now weighs 16.4 kilograms, according to the zoo.
As of Thursday, though, visitors can now see the cub and her mother from 9:45 a.m. until 4:45 p.m. on a first-come-first-served basis. Viewing time is limited to one to two minutes. Zoo officials said around 9,500 people per day are expected to come and see Xiang Xiang.
Kyodo reported that people started arriving at 3 a.m. and by 9:30 a.m., 1,201 people had lined up to get tickets to see the pandas.© Japan Today/Kyodo