Hua Mei (female) was the first surviving panda cub born in the US, at the San Diego Zoo. She was born on August 21, 1999. Her parents were Bai Yun (female) and Shi Shi (male).
Shi Shi was wild born and Bai Yun was born at the Wolong Giant Panda Research Center, China. They came to the US in 1996 as part of a loan agreement between the US and China. Shi Shi which means 'Rock', never really warmed up to his prearranged mate Bai Yun 'White Cloud' so Hua Mei was born through artificial insemination using Shi Shi's sperm.
Hua was a darling, bringing joy to the many, many visitors who came to see the panda cub from day one. As part of the original agreement with China, as soon as Hua reached breeding age, she would go to the Wolong Center in China to participate in the breeding program there. This took place in 2004.
Since her move to Wolong, she has mothered three pairs of twins. Her first pair were born in September 2004, then the second pair was born the following year on August 2005, she took a year off and recently had her third pair of twins in July of 2007.
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