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Giant pandas arrive in Copenhagen

05.04.2019  08:16

The two giant pandas Mao Er and Xing Er arrived in the Danish capital after flying to Denmark from China.


After a three hours flight from Chengdu to Beijing and a stopover at Beijing Capital Airport, the two pandas were loaded onto a SAS Airbus 340 and flown to their new home in Denmark.

The plane was decorated with the faces of its two VIP passengers and landed at Copenhagen Airport on 18.45 Danish time yesterday.

The bears were accompanied by animal keepers from both China and Denmark, a veterinarian, Scientific Director for Copenhagen Zoo Bengt Holst, as well as Denmark’s ambassador to China, A. Carsten Damsgaard.

“The pandas remained calm during the flight. Both enjoyed meals consisting of bamboo packed in Chengdu and ate between 20-40 kilos each,” said Danish animal keeper, Rasmus Pedersen.

Also the temperature was kept exactly between 20-21 °C during the entire flight - a comfortable temperature for the pandas.


In Copenhagen Airport, the two bears were welcomed by the CEO of Copenhagen Airport, Thomas Woldbye, the Minister of Culture, Mette Bock, the Chinese ambassador to Denmark, H.E. Fr. Deng Ying, CEO for Copenhagen Zoo, Jørgen Nielsen and Minister for Food and Environment, Jakob Ellemann-Jensen, who welcomed the pandas to Denmark in a speech:

“Two beautiful and healthy pandas have now arrived from the great country of China - a living symbol of the solid friendship and partnership between Denmark and China”, said the minister.

The pandas arrived to windy conditions in Copenhagen with temperatures around 13 °C, slightly cooler than the departure city of Chengdu. Zoologist in Copenhagen Zoo, Mikkel Selvig, however, is not worried about the pandas adapting to the Danish weather.

 “The temperature in Denmark is in fact very suitable for the pandas”, he said.


After the welcome ceremony and official paperwork, the two pandas were loaded on a specially decorated truck and transported to their new home at Copenhagen Zoo. Here they will move into a yin-yang shaped panda enclosure designed by the famous Danish architect company, Bjarne Ingels Group.

The panda agreement was made in connection with Her Majesty the Queen Margrethe’s state visit to China in 2014.

The arrival of the two pandas in Denmark marks the official beginning of the Sino-Danish Giant Panda Joint Research Cooperation.