Monday, January 5, 2015

Chinese Officials Concerned About Distemper Outbreak Among Pandas


BEIJING – A giant panda living at a nature preserve in China has died and three others have distemper, a canine disease that has a high mortality rate among the bears, state-owned CCTV reported Sunday.

A panda named Chengcheng died on Dec. 9 from distemper, the Wild Animal Conservation Research Center in the northern province of Shaanxi said.

Three other pandas – Dabao, Fengfeng and Zhuzhu – have distemper, veterinarians determined last week.

A keeper found Chengcheng shivering and weak on Dec. 6, and the animal died three days later, CCTV said.

Distemper has a 90 percent mortality rate when transmitted from one panda to another, the China Daily reported, citing experts.

Pandas are among the most endangered mammals in the world, with less than 1,600 of the animals left in the wild.


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