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The Fuzhou Giant Panda Research and Exchange Center released the statement:
"With heavy hearts, we solemnly announce that the star panda‘ Basi ’(…), an angel of friendship in China and abroad, has died at the age of 37 years."
The average lifespan of pandas is 20 years, and they can be extended in captivity.
Basi was quite a celebrity, year after year his birthday was celebrated with honors and on the day of his death the farewell ceremony organized at the zoo was broadcast live.
Basi She was born in the wild, but was rescued very young after falling into a river in southwestern China. Since then, he has lived in captivity. He came to travel abroad on loan: in 1987 he lived for six months in the San Diego Zoo (United States).
Fewer than 2,000 pandas remain in the wild, a species threatened by the drastic disappearance of its habitat in recent decades. However, China has put in place significant resources to preserve the species and its environment. In 2016, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) considered that the panda was no longer part of the list of endangered species.
Last year the giant panda Jia Jia died in Hong Kong's Ocean Park, which until then was the animal of its species that had been in captivity for the longest time. The animal was euthanized after its health rapidly deteriorated. He had spent his 38 years of life in the zoo.
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