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They call me "Peaceful Mountain"


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WASHINGTON - That lovable little guy at the National Zoo will now be known as Tai Shan, which means "peaceful mountain."

The zoo kept with Chinese tradition and named the cub 100 days after its birth.

"This cub is healthy and strong," said John Berry, director of the Smithsonian's National Zoological Park, during the naming ceremony.

"Tai Shan is one of the most famous mountains in China," said Chinese embassy official Zheng Zeguang during the naming ceremony..

The zoo says 202,045 people voted online for the cub's name from Aug. 24 through Sept. 30.

Forty-four percent of those who voted chose Tai Shan.

Voters had five names from which to choose:

Hua Sheng, which means "China Washington;"

Tai Shan, which means "peaceful mountain;"

Qiang Qiang, which means "strong, powerful;"

Sheng Hua, which means "Washington China;"

Long Shan, which means "dragon mountain."

The name Tai Shan received 88,245 votes. Qiang Qiang received 66,195; Sheng Hua, 18,146; Long Shan 16,100; and Hua Sheng, 13,359.

Panda fans celebrated the 100-day milestone at a zoo ceremony featuring performances by Chinese dance troops and martial artists. Officials from China delivered speeches toasting the fuzzy little cub.

Tai Shan, pronounced "tie-SHON," didn't attend the naming ceremony. He spent the morning with his mother, Mei Xiang, in a den that's still off limits to zoo visitors. His handlers are slowly introducing him to the exhibit enclosure where he's expected to go on public view within the next couple months.

Mom Mei Xiang had the cub July 9, four months after being artificially inseminated.

The cub is only the fourth panda cub in the United States - and the first at the National Zoo - to live more than a few days after being born in captivity.

Mei Xiang and the father, Tian Tian, are on a 10-year loan from China. The cub will be sent to China when it is 2.

Don't you think they could have given him a good 'merican name?! Something along the lines of Smokey. How about Spotty? Bob? Bill? How about W? :laugh:

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I want a pet Panda

I can't wait for the day that technology will allow us to mess with their DNA so we can make miniature Pandas. Mini-elephants and hippos would be cool too.

And miniture humans! Think of all that dust in the little cracks you can't get to that a miniture human could.

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You know that isn't as crazy of an idea as you may believe, if somewhere down the line resources become such a tremendous problem we could just make humans smaller so they eat and take up less room and everything else in general. If we could get them to live as long as before then I don't see a major problem.

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