Date
23 March 2017
Jia Jia was born in the wild in Sichuan province 37 years ago and was presented to Hong Kong by China to mark the 1997 handover. Photo: CNS
Jia Jia was born in the wild in Sichuan province 37 years ago and was presented to Hong Kong by China to mark the 1997 handover. Photo: CNS

Ocean Park panda gets an early birthday present from Guinness

If she were human, she would be 110 years old, but Jia Jia is a panda who is turning 37 in August.

Nonetheless, she can officially lay claim to being a senior citizen – and she has a world record to show for it.

Jia Jia, the giant panda which has been one of the top attractions in Ocean Park since 1999, has been declared the world’s oldest panda to ever live in captivity by the Guinness World Records.  

She received a certificate from the records compiler during a ceremony on Tuesday, Apple Daily reports.

Jia Jia, a gift from China to Hong Kong to mark the handover, was born in the wild in Sichuan province in 1978.

The previous record was held by a male panda, Du Du, who died in July 1999, aged 36, in a mainland zoo.

An An, another Ocean Park panda, is 29 and the second oldest giant male panda in captivity.

A captive giant panda lives to about 20 years while those in the wild have a shorter lifespan, but it’s rare for a giant panda to live past 30.

Ocean Park senior curator Howard Chuk said Jia Jia is in great shape compared with other old pandas, although she suffers from high blood pressure, arthritis and cataract and needs medication every day.

She has been cared for by the same team for the past 10 years.

To celebrate Jia Jia’s coming birthday, Ocean park is giving free admission to visitors who are over 65 in August.

Up to four companions will get a 30 percent discount. Those born in August are also entitled to lower admission prices.

– Contact us at [email protected]

TL/AC/RA

EJI Weekly Newsletter

Please click here to unsubscribe