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Giant Panda Experience

Current experience hours: 9:30 am-4:00 pm

For the second time ever, two giant pandas are in Toronto! The first time was in 1985, when two giant pandas spent the summer at the Toronto Zoo. This time, the pandas will be in Canada for at least 10 years (a minimum of five years at the Toronto Zoo and five years at the Calgary Zoo).

Er Shun and Da Mao arrived from China in March 2013 and are now very settled into their new home in our Eurasia Wilds. This pair was chosen as a good genetic match for breeding. Black and white in markings, and about the size of an American black bear, giant pandas have become a Zoo visitor favourite. They spend their days eating a lot of bamboo, and both have become quite fond of the numerous enrichment items their keepers create and offer them daily to simulate the activities they would encounter in a wild habitat. Both pandas have indoor and outdoor holding areas where you can see them, and will be calling the Toronto Zoo home until spring 2018.

Giant Panda Experience:

Learn more about giant pandas in this keeper talk presented by Maria Franke, Curator of Mammals.

Giant Panda Interpretive Centre:

Before you get up close to our adorable new giant panda pair, you will have the chance to take in the new, stat-of-the-art Panda Interpretive Centre. This climate controlled centre features many interpretive and interactive elements for visitors to enjoy year round. Interpretive themes will include Eating Bamboo, Threats to Giant Pandas, and Saving Giant Pandas. After the Panda Interpretive Centre visitors will have a chance to see Da Mao and Er Shun in either their outdoor or indoor habitats.


February 11, 2012 in Chongqing China.
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper witnessing Toronto Zoo CEO John Tracogna and Calgary Zoo President and CEO Clement Lanthier, along with Mme Hu, VP, Secretary-General of the Chinese Association of Zoological Gardens, signing the official Giant Panda Cooperation Agreement confirming the arrival of Er Shun and Da Mao to Canada.

As part of a long-term conservation partnership agreement between China and Canada, signed by Hu Jintao, President of China and Mr. Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada, China will loan two giant pandas to two Canadian Zoos (Toronto and Calgary) for a ten year period. The good news is that Toronto Zoo will be home to the breeding pair for a minimum of five years from 2013 to 2018. The pandas will then relocate to the Calgary Zoo sometime in 2018.

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