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Zoo Animals Respond Differently During Isolation

COVID-19 is not only affecting the way human beings are interacting – it’s affecting zoo animals too.

Ying Ying and Le Le, two giant pandas living together in a Hong Kong zoo, finally got in the mood to mate after 13 years of celibacy. It’s commonly known that pandas have a low libido and their mating season only lasts a few days per year. This year, those precious days fell under the COVID-19 quarantine timeline, giving the couple the intimacy they clearly needed to do the deed.

Michael Boos, executive director in zoological operations and conservation at Ocean Park states that “the successful natural mating process is extremely exciting for all of us, as the chance of pregnancy via natural mating is higher than by artificial insemination.” And let’s not forget: pandas are a species in danger of extinction, so this is great news! And it seems pandas aren’t the only ones enjoying mating season

However, other animals are not taking to isolation the same way pandas are. Primates are missing the humans who can’t come to see them, so in a Russian Zoo, they have decided to entertain them the way you would entertain 4 years-old – with cartoons – and it seems to be working!

Chimp twins Tikhon and Anfisa are big fans of Disney’s “The Lion King,” but their favorite show is a Russian cartoon about an exhausted mother monkey who lives in a zoo…more relatable. Tikhon lies on a sofa while snacking on raw vegetables as he enjoys the cartoons. Female Anfisa plays with a large children’s construction toy as she watches. I guess that’s how monkeys binge watch? And speaking of binge watching, check out our list of sci-fi movies to watch during quarantine.

So as you can see, what works for some doesn’t work for others. Luckily, we still have options. If you are more like our friends the Chimpanzees, here is a fun way to interact with the outside world in a safe way.

 

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