Clever panda fakes pregnancy to get air-conditioned room and extra food

By Samantha Luiz
15 August 2014

Yuan Yuan the giant panda managed to pull the wool over her caretakers’ eyes by pretending to be pregnant.

It appears the sneaky panda wanted to relive the special treatment she received the last time she was pregnant in 2013.

As expected, the officials at Taipei Zoo in Taiwan were thrilled in early June when the endangered bear, who'd recently been artificially inseminated, started showing signs that the procedure had been successful.

Although early pregnancy in pandas is nearly impossible to detect, Yuan Yuan was showing a loss of appetite and a thickening around the uterus.

These symptoms were enough for her to be deemed pregnant and moved to special accommodation where she was to receive special attention to ensure she had a healthy cub.

Her new room was luxurious to say the least: a single, air-conditioned room with round-the-clock care and all of the bamboo, fruit and buns she could eat.

The panda enjoyed the treatment for about a month before researchers flown in from China discovered that she was not pregnant.

Experts “some clever pandas” notice the superior treatment expectant panda mothers receive and "have used this to their advantage to improve their quality of life."


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