on 25 July 2017
The Panda reserve opened its gates and finally let us in. We went to the office and were each presented with a t-shirt to wear and an official volunteers pass to wear around our necks. Lockers were also provided. Off we 3 went with Sherry in tow. Our first call was to Bo Bo's enclosure. Our charge was to collect all the bamboo (pandas will only eat fresh bamboo and 30 kilos a day!), sweep the stone areas clean and collect all the poo which, for all the world, looks like a sweet potato. We became experts at this, even if I do say so myself. Bo Bo.. the one you saw me feeding.. was in his cage whilst we refreshed his outdoor area, after we finished there he went out and we cleaned and hosed down his cage.
In the next enclosure were twin 4 month old cubs. We cleaned that enclosure in the afternoon, much easier than our morning task as it had already been cleaned a.m. After we finished the keeper hopped into their enclosure. It was hilarious, they were all playing chasings with both cubs, unsuccessfully, trying to catch him, that went on for about 15 minutes until he left the enclosure, the 2 cubs continued frolicking for ages, mind you, the cubs are certainly not small and almost fully grown. Very energetic for Pandas.
We were fortunate as volunteers to have a much better area to see them then the general public who are not allowed in the areas we were taken to. Must say it was quite amusing to see the crowds hanging over the fence and watching us cleaning .. I'm sure not one of us looks at all like a Panda.