Ocean Park Hong Kong’s long-time resident panda Jia Jia will turn 37 this summer, potentially making her the next Guinness World Record holder as the oldest panda in captivity.
Jia Jia was born in China in 1978, although the exact date of her birth is unknown as she was captured in the wild. In celebration of the second anniversary of Hong Kong’s handover, Jia Jia, along with another panda called An An were gifted to Hong Kong in 1999.
Grant Abel, Ocean Park’s director of animal care, said that it was extremely rare for pandas to live to such an age. “It’s probably equivalent to someone, a human person, who would be over a hundred years of age,” he said.
In celebration of her longevity, the park is considering submitting an application to the Guinness World Records after she turns 37.
Ocean Park’s chief veterinarian, Paolo Martelli, said Jia Jia is considered to be a in remarkably good health for her age, even though her vision has become severely impaired and her hearing has deteriorated over the years.
According to the Guinness World Records, the previous holder of the “oldest panda ever in captivity” record was a panda named Du Du from Wuhan Zoo in China. Du Du died at the age of 37 back in 1999.
By Crystal Lau
[Images via thenewpaper online]