Hugs, games and plenty of bamboo. It is an unusual method for handling anxiety, but keepers believe it is helping to calm pandas upset by last month's earthquake in Sichuan. Conservationists hope the arrival of eight of the young animals at Beijing zoo will highlight the damage caused to their habitat and encourage donations to the renowned Wolong reserve, close to the epicentre of the shock and badly hit by the disaster.
There's a photo gallery here.
Did you know that these pandas came from the Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuary, a cherished World Heritage site and home to 30% of the world’s remaining pandas? Or that the Sanctuaries include breeding centers that support zoos all over the world, and in the United States? Without these centers, the future of the remaining endangered pandas is uncertain. Check out http://www.friendsofworldheritage.org/ (a grassroots initiative created by the United Nations Foundation with Expedia, Inc. and UNESCO’s World Heritage Center) to see how you can help save the pandas.