DC Trawler

Pan Pan Goes Bye Bye

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It only took 364 days, but finally there’s a news story that puts a smile on my face. Better late than never, 2016!

Jon Sharman, The Independent:

The world’s oldest male panda, whose descendants total a quarter of the world’s captive-bred pandas, has died in China at the equivalent human age of 100.

Pan Pan, which lived in China’s south-west Sichuan province, died aged 31. Officials will carry out an autopsy though the death was not deemed suspicious.

No sign of foul play, then? Hmmm… that’s what they want us to think!

Unfortunately, it’s not all good news. Serenitie Wang and Ben Westcott, CNN:

During his life, Pan Pan fathered more than 130 children and grandchildren, according to Chinese state media, making 25% of all pandas in captivity his descendents…

His family is now living in zoos across the world, from California in the United States to Chiang Mai in Thailand and even all the way in Edinburgh, Scotland.

On one paw, kudos to the lumbering beast on figuring out how to reproduce. That’s more than most of those stupid pandas can manage. On the other paw, Pan Pan’s meddling with the course of nature is only delaying the inevitable. If you really care about these creatures, isn’t it better to let them die out with some dignity? You’re really going to sit there and watch their clumsy attempts to mate, before they give up and go back to eating piles of dirty sticks? It’s all just so… gauche.

Farewell, Pan Pan. More room for us!

What’s the point of giving them names, anyway? It’s not like they come when you call them anyway. (This is also one of my many problems with cats.)