Giant Panda Ya Ya Returns to China after 20 Years

On the morning of April 26th local time, the giant panda Ya Ya living in the United States set off from Memphis Zoo in Tennessee and embarked on a journey back to China.

The giant panda Ya Ya took the FX9759 flight and departed from Memphis, Tennessee at 11:58 am local time on the 26th ( 1 am Beijing time on the 27th). The flight lasted about 16 hours and arrived in Shanghai around 5 pm Beijing time on the 27th.

The giant panda Le Le was born on July 18, 1998 at Chongqing Zoo and was sent to live at Shanghai Zoo in 1999. The giant panda Ya Ya was born on August 3, 2000 at Beijing Zoo.

In April 1999, the Memphis Zoo in the United States reached an agreement with the China Association of Zoological Gardens to lease two giant pandas from China. On April 7, 2003, Ya Ya and Le Le arrived at the Memphis Zoo. In 2013, after a ten-year lease agreement expired, China and the United States extended their lease for another ten years until it expires in April 2023.

In December 2022, the Memphis Zoo announced that Ya Ya and Le Le would be returned to China, ending their 20-year lease. Unfortunately, Le Le did not live to see this day.

On February 2, 2023, a notification from Memphis Zoo in the United States that Lele was found dead on the morning of February 1 local time.

SEE ALSO: Giant Panda Lin Hui Passes Away in Thailand

Due to the death of her companion giant panda Lele, Ya Ya’s health condition has also been a concern among Chinese netizens. Some netizens are calling for Ya Ya to be brought back to China as soon as possible.

After returning to China, Ya Ya will first undergo quarantine inspection in Shanghai. According to relevant regulations, the quarantine period is generally 30 days.

The cooperative research on giant panda conservation has promoted the protection of giant pandas, public education, and cultural exchange. We hope that countries and people from all walks of life will continue to make efforts to contribute to the protection of endangered species.