Panda Bei Bei recovering well from surgery

China Daily (USA) - - ACROSS AMERICA - By CHEN WEI­HUA in Wash­ing­ton chen­wei­hua@chi­nadai­lyusa.com

Gi­ant panda cub Bei Bei is stable and recovering fol­low­ing an emer­gency bowel ob­struc­tion surgery on Fri­day to re­move a dense, mas­ti­cated lemon-sized mass of bam­boo, the Smith­so­nian’s Na­tional Zoo an­nounced.

Bei Bei showed signs of stom­ach dis­com­fort and nau­sea last Thurs­day. The 15-month-old gi­ant panda cub was sleep­ing more than nor­mal and not eat­ing.

Af­ter close ob­ser­va­tion and care by zoo staff, he was taken to a ve­teri­nary hos­pi­tal on Fri­day for fur­ther eval­u­a­tion and then had the surgery to re­move the bam­boo that was dis­tend­ing his small in­tes­tine and pre­vent­ing in­testi­nal move­ment, the zoo said Fri­day.

Bei Bei is awake and recovering in the zoo’s David M. Ruben­stein Gi­ant Panda Habi­tat. The an­i­mal is ex­pected to re­sume his reg­u­lar diet son, the zoo said.

The zoo posted on its Face­book on Sun­day that as of this morn­ing, Bei Bei has taken his med­i­ca­tions, uri­nated well and both Mei Xiang and Bei Bei are hap­pily sleep­ing in their in­door en­clo­sures.

Bei Bei got his name in Septem­ber last year when Peng Liyuan and Michelle Obama, the first ladies of China and the United States, vis­ited the zoo and named the then-1-mon­thold cub.

He has be­come a new dar­ling at the na­tional zoo. On Nov 21, gi­ant-panda keeper Ni­cole MacCorkle posted on the zoo’s web­site about how Bei Bei has be­come more in­de­pen­dent from his mother, Mei Xiang.

“It is hard to be­lieve, but the time is rapidly ap­proach­ing when he will live sep­a­rately from her. He has a vo­ra­cious ap­petite, and re­lies very lit­tle on milk from Mei Xiang. He weighs 90 pounds (the largest of Mei Xiang’s three cubs at this age) and gets his own diet of bam­boo, bis­cuits, ap­ples, sweet pota­toes and pears,” wrote the gi­ant panda keeper.

She de­scribed Tai Shan, Bei Bei’s el­dest sib­ling who has been liv­ing in China since early 2010, as “thriv­ing”.

The zoo an­nounced in Oc­to­ber that Bao Bao, an­other Bei Bei sib­ling, will re­turn to China early next year. Un­der bi­lat­eral agree­ment, all cubs born at the zoo move to China when they are 4 years old. Bao Bao turns 4 on Aug 23, 2017.

PRO­VIDED TO CHINA DAILY

Gi­ant panda cub Bei Bei is recovering from a pro­ce­dure on Fri­day to clear a bowel ob­struc­tion.

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