A Tale of Two Ling Lings

Each of the last two posts here documented an attack on a human by a giant panda named Ling Ling. But although both pandas were named Ling Ling, it is important to note that they are actually two separate pandas.

The Ling Ling involved in the 1984 incident is a female giant panda. She and her male partner Hsing Hsing were captured in China in 1971. In 1972, following Nixon’s visit to China, Ling Ling and Hsing Hsing were given to the US. Although they had five cubs, none survived for long after birth. Ling Ling died in 1992. Hsing Hsing died in 1999.

The Ling Ling involved in the 1995 incident is a male giant panda. He appears to be the same Ling Ling who was part of a pair of pandas who were exhibited in the US in 1987/88. That Ling Ling was born in the Beijing Zoo in September 1985. China exchanged Ling Ling for another panda from the Ueno Zoo in Japan. Ling Ling died in 2008 at the Ueno Zoo.

 

December 1984, USA

Country: USA

Location: National Zoo, Washington DC

Date: 23 December 1984

Panda: Ling Ling

Details:

Keeper Edwin Jacobs was mauled and bitten by Ling Ling, a 14 year-old female panda. Jacobs entered the cage to check on Ling Ling. According to the Times-Post news service, Jacobs had “lacerations on his neck, chest, back, arms and leg”. Although most were superficial. “one or more were deep lacerations that apparently were caused by biting”. Jacobs had 20 years of experience as a keeper and had worked frequently around Ling Ling and her partner Hsing Hsing.

A zoo spokeperson was quoted as saying:

People forget that pandas are wild animals. They are also naturally aggressive and territorial, and when Mr Jacobs entered the enclosure, she responded to it as an intrusion of her space.

Link: Panda’s Keeper Out Of Hospital

February 1995, China

Country: China

Location: Huzhou People’s Park

Date: 26 February 1995

Panda: Ling Ling

Details:

A zoo in China was reportedly fined because Ling Ling, a visiting panda, bit a child who got into the cage and “began teasing the animal”.

The boy, 10, was apparently bitten in the legs by Ling Ling. The Associated Press reported:

The China Daily said the boy, Lu Jie, is now disabled.

Link: Panda behind bars: A 10-year-old boy in Huzhou, China, who…

Link: Briefs

1970s, France

Country: France

Location: Vincennes Zoo, Paris

Date: (sometime between 1974 and 1981)

Panda: Yen Yen

Details:

Former French President Valery Giscard d’Estaing was apparently attacked by Yen Yen, a male panda, while visiting his daughter at Vincennes Zoo. Although it happened sometime in the 1970s, Giscard d’Estaing did not speak publicly about the incident until May 2013. The BBC quoted him as saying (in translation):

They came to extract me from its claws but imagine what would have been said had the animal knocked me to the ground,” the famously tall president – he is 1.89m (6ft 2in) – remarked to laughter from the audience.

Iain Valentine, Director of Giant Pandas at the Edinburgh Zoo, told the BBC “Although they are vegetarian bears, obviously at the end of the day pandas are still very powerful and muscular bears with teeth and claws to match”.

Yen Yen was one of two male pandas given to France in 1973 by China. Yen Yen died in January of 2000. The other panda, Li Li, died from a pancreatic tumour only months after arriving in France.

Bau Bau, world’s oldest Giant Panda dies at 34

Bau Bau, who at 34 was the world’s oldest known giant panda, has died in the Berlin Zoo.

Apart from his longevity, Bau Bau was perhaps best known for attacking female Ming Ming in 1992, when Bao Bao was on a “breeding loan” to the London Zoo. Ming Ming’s ear was partially detached during the fight.

May 2011, China

Country: China

Location: Wuhan Zoo, Hubei

Date: 2 May 2011

Panda: Hope

Details:

Hope, a five year-old male panda in Wuhan Zoo, chased and killed a peacock that had strayed into its enclosure. Although peacocks often entered the panda area from their neighbouring enclosure, this is the first time that one had been killed. The Telegraph reported:

Chen Jun, zoo keeper, said: “In spite of the general impression of being docile, panda is after all an animal. As an omnivorous animal though, giant panda sometimes eats meat.

“As you can see at the video, the panda reacted quite fast and ran at a surprising speed.”

March 2011, USA

Country: USA

Location: San Diego Zoo, San Diego

Date: 13 March 2011

Panda: Bai Yun (White Cloud)

Details:

Nineteen year-old female panda Bai Yun apparently pushed her way through an unlocked gate meant to separate her from her keepers. When the keepers attempted to herd her back through the gate, Bai Yun attacked one of them.

Continue reading ‘March 2011, USA’



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