Giant pandas, the seldom-mating mammal that humans just won't allow to fade mercifully into extinction, are world-renowned for their reluctance to make new pandas, so it's pretty big news that the UK's only panda couple might be getting ready to do the sex to each other, or at least have scientists "assist" them with the sex so that the zoo can sell some price-hiked baby panda merchandise. Where would the giant panda be without squee-based capitalism?
Nowhere, according to the Telegraph, which reports that lady panda Tian Tian (Sweetie) and her gentleman panda Yang Guang (Sunshine) at the Edinburgh Zoo are showing pretty strong signs that they will be down to fuck in the not-so-distant future. How do zoo experts know that the pandas are preparing for sexy times? For starters, Yang Guang has been doing handstands against trees and peeing on all the highest promontories in the panda enclosure, thus signaling his virility. Tian Tian, meanwhile, has started calling out to Yang Guang, which is common behavior during the small window of time nature has left cracked open for panda mating.
That window, according to the Telegraph, is less than 48 hours, the amount of time female pandas are "in season." Iain Valentine, the aptly-named giant panda director for the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, has said that, although the Edinburgh Zoo is super-thrilled that its pandas could mate as soon as March, panda sex is never a sure-thing, no matter how many urine samples are analyzed, no matter how many handstands are observed. The zoo will combine "both natural and assisted reproduction methods" this year in the effort to preserve the giant panda for all Scottish schoolchildren, no matter how much the pandas themselves just want to relax without worrying about raising some spoiled little celebrity panda cub. Seriously, that baby panda is going to grow up to be such an entitled asshole, and the world doesn't needed any more entitled pandas tumbling aimlessly around the world, hoping to impale themselves on bamboo shoots.