Pandamonium as giant panda cub Xiang Xiang starts 7-hour ‘working’ day


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

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For the panda's sake, I hope that's a one-way mirror.

As for the crowds, I'll just extend a word of sympathy for any dads (or mums or kids even) who've been dragged along against their will by another family member who's bought into the hysteria. Queuing to get into that would drive me up the wall.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I'm not locked in here with you

You're locked in here with me!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Luddite for a Luddite you are quite erudite. That's exactly what this is, its an animal selfie, it's bragging rights in the izakaya. I can just about stomach a well run zoo, but don't get me started on owl cafes, rabbit / cat islands / whaling etc.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Poor panda. I hope the zoo does not allow flash photography as it would drive the animal mad, then again, animal welfare isn't top priority here. Anyway, look at all the mob too busy taking a poor photo rather than actually looking at the panda. It's so they can prove to others that they've seen it, it's a pity that ticking off a list of things to impress others is more improtant than the actual experience.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

The herd mentality of our "developed" society. Scary.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The photo says it all.

One of those weep or laugh situations.

Go figure.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Pandemonium. This is a clever play on words because they're talking about a panda. Bravo.

※slow clap※

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

This is what a peaceful nation reports on.

Kung Fu pandas in training !

I bet hes a fascist liberal though XD

-10 ( +0 / -10 )

Beautiful and fascinating animals....I hope their habitat is preserved in China.....

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Yes! Right title


0 ( +1 / -1 )

Look we have a captive animal totally removed from its natural environment lets crowd around it take 10000 photos to show........... ...?

Pathetic is a nice way to say these people's lives are worse than an animals.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I wonder how often it has to put in overtime?

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Wow. I tend to think of zoos as places for families with small children. It doesn't look like that scrum would be safe for kids.

And why does everyone need to take their own photo? To prove they were there? To whom? Surely there are plenty of professional photos available online.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Well, with so many visitors so suddenly, I wouldn't be surprised this cub shows abnormal behavior in just a few months.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

I must say, if I was the panda I would have fears of such a large crowd with flashing camera and phones and probably noise. More circus than zoo, which I never like anyway.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

starts 7-hour ‘working’ day

Even animals have to work in Japan. Poor expensive panda.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

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