They plan to introduce four-year-old Meng Meng to Jiao Qing, a
panda three years her senior, in the hope that romance will help
her with the frustrations associated with life in captivity that
could be behind her habit.
"Meng Meng is in puberty," Berlin Zoo director Andreas Knieriem
told the Berliner Zeitung newspaper on Sunday. "The reverse walk
is a protest against things she dislikes, be it the food or the
China lent Meng Meng and Jiao Qing to Germany earlier this year.
The two bears are a major attraction at the zoo's $10-million
Chinese compound inaugurated by Chancellor Angela Merkel and
President Xi Jinping in July.
Giant pandas in captivity are kept apart except for in the
mating season, which occurs between February and May.
"By then, Meng Meng will have reached sexual maturity and could
focus all her energy on seducing her partner," Knieriem said.
(Reporting by Joseph Nasr, editing by David Evans)
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