Bon voyage, Bao Bao! National Zoo panda heads to China soon

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WASHINGTON (AP) – The National Zoo says 3-year-old panda Bao Bao will fly to China this month.

The zoo tweeted Monday that Bao Bao will move to China on Feb. 21. The zoo recently announced a celebration of Bao Bao starting Feb. 16 in anticipation of her departure.

The zoo’s cooperative breeding agreement with the China Wildlife Conservation Association requires all cubs born at the zoo move to China by the time they turn 4 years old. Bao Bao turns 4 on Aug. 23.

Bao Bao is the first surviving cub born at the zoo since 2005. Older brother Tai Shan left for China in 2010. Their mother, Mei Xiang, has since had a third surviving cub, Bei Bei, who was born on Aug. 22, 2015.

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