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Meet the McPandas; 1,500 FANS GREET VISITING PANDAS.. AFTER 5,500 MILE TRIP TO SCOTLAND FROM CHINA.

Byline: STEPHEN WHITE

TWO giant pandas touched down in Edinburgh from China yesterday... and the freezing conditions made them feel right at home.

There was snow on the ground as female Tian Tian and male Yang Guang - or Sweetie and Sunshine - emerged after a 10-hour, 5,000-mile flight.

Tian Tian was first to be taken off the 777 aircraft, the "FedEx Panda Express", in her speciallydesigned crate with perspex sides.

The eight-year-olds are to stay in Edinburgh Zoo for 10 years and officials hope they breed.

Although they won't go on public display for two weeks, 1,500 tickets to see them sold out in 24 hours. There will also be online footage of the two animals, taken from four hidden "panda-cams". The bears' EUR250,000 enclosures will also be 3 Number of panda mating which is y aybpf linked by a "love tunnel". The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland is paying EUR700,000 a year to China for their loan, with another EUR70,000 a year spent on bamboo. The pandas are the first to arrive in Britain since Ming Ming left London in 1994.

3 Number of months in panda mating season - which is between March and May

1994 Year that the UK's last giant panda, Ming Ming, left London zoo to return to China

4oz What a giant panda weighs when it is born - although it can go up to 6oz

CAPTION(S):

BAMBOO TIME Z Yang Guang GIANT 3UPHEAVAL Yang Guang will be settling into new home UPROOT J Tian Tian in China FAREWELL J Tartan pandas TOUCHDOWN J They arrive JOY J Well-wishers in Edinburgh ARRIVAL J Tian Tian in crate yesterday
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Geographic Code:9CHIN
Date:Dec 5, 2011
Words:277
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