Airline steps up to provide Calgary Zoo with bamboo for picky pandas
Five-month-old panda cubs Jia Panpan and Jia Yueyue play in an enclosure at the Toronto Zoo, as they are exhibited to the media on Monday, March 7, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
Published Thursday, November 7, 2019 8:59PM EST
CALGARY - A culinary crisis has been avoided at the Calgary Zoo which was facing a bamboo shortage for its four giant pandas.
The pandas, which staff admit are picky eaters, munch on about 1,200 kilograms of bamboo a week.
The zoo was left scrambling when Chinese airline Hainan announced it was discontinuing direct flights from China to Calgary at the end of October.
WestJet stepped forward and is now flying fresh bamboo on its cargo planes twice weekly from Toronto to Calgary.
The zoo says Hainan still flies to Toronto and hands off the panda food to WestJet.
The first shipment arrived on Oct. 26.