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At 9 a.m. Monday, when the front gates of the San Diego Zoo opened, some visitors sprinted through the zoo to the Giant Panda exhibit just to get a spot at the front of the line.
According to animal keeper, Lisa Martin, celebrating the birthdays of the Giant Panda cubs currently on exhibit at the zoo is serious business for some.
Panda enthusiasts from all over San Diego County and even from other parts of the country line up to be on hand when the cubs get their birthday cakes.
Martin said some cub fans from outside of California will contact the zoo to give them a heads up before traveling in the hopes of getting a seat for the event.
On Monday, Zhen Zhen and Su Lin enjoyed two cakes made of ice and portions of their diet including bamboo, apples, carrot and yams.
This year the staff out did themselves by adding a bunch of colors, Martin said.
Zhen Zhen, who is turning two-years old, and Su Lin, who is turning four-years old, are both cubs of Bai Yun.
Using a thermal camera and an ultrasound, zoo staff spotted images last month confirming the San Diego Zoo’s giant panda Bai Yun is expecting a cub.
Zoo visitors and animal lovers all over the world will check in on mother and cub as the pregnancy progresses via the zoo’s only access, an online web camera.
If you visit the zoo, don’t expect to see Bai Yun. She’s in an off-exhibit habitat. If a cub is born, Bai Yun and the cub will remain in the den for four to five months.