Giant Pandas Arrive in France for the First Time in 10 Years
HONG KONG, Jan. 16, 2012 — FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) and one of the world’s largest express transportation companies, announced the safe arrival of two three-year-old giant pandas, Huan Huan and Yuan Zi, from the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in China to Paris Charles de Gaulle International Airport in France.
Working in conjunction with ZooParc de Beauval, the specially-chartered Boeing 777F flight known as the “FedEx Panda Express” landed in Paris on January 15 at 12pm CET. The arrival of these Chinese ambassadors marks the first time in 10 years that giant pandas will reside in France.
The non-stop flight was chartered especially for the VIPs—Very Important Pandas—and the pair travelled in custom-built enclosures provided by FedEx Express. While in flight, Huan Huan and Yuan Zi spent the journey snoozing and eating bamboo. They were accompanied by a Chinese veterinarian and animal handler as well as the managing director from ZooParc de Beauval to look after their needs throughout the journey.
FedEx Express provided logistical services for the transportation, providing an expert team to ensure the rare animals’ safety. During the flight, the pandas were in the safe hands of seasoned pilots Captain Paul Cassel, Captain Tom Jenkins and Captain John Hunt, who all have extensive experience in transporting some of the world’s most precious cargo, ranging from white rhinos to penguins.
The pandas continued their journey in FedEx Express vehicles to their new home at ZooParc de Beauval. French authorities were also on hand to ensure a smooth ride. Upon arrival, the pandas will reside together in the zoo’s new magnificent Chinese area in a specially-built giant panda enclosure.
FedEx Express Transports Many Unusual Shipments
FedEx Express has a long history of transporting rare and delicate cargo. In December 2011, FedEx Express transported Tian Tian, a female panda and Yang Guang, a male panda to Edinburgh Zoo in the United Kingdom. In February 2010, FedEx Express transported Tai Shan, a male panda born at the National Zoo in Washington D.C., U.S., and Mei Lan, a female panda born at Zoo Atlanta, Georgia, U.S., back to China. In 2003, FedEx Express transported two giant pandas from China to the Memphis Zoo, Tennessee, U.S. In 2000, FedEx Express transported Tai Shan’s parents from China to Washington D.C.’s National Zoo.
Exotic cargo transported by FedEx Express has included polar bears, white tigers, elephants, penguins, mountain lions, gorillas, eagles and even a 13-foot tiger shark used in filming the movie “Jaws.”
Other unusual international cargo transported by FedEx includes a windmill from Denmark, the Ryder Cup and a vintage Jaguar Le Mans car worth more than £1 million.
About ZooParc de Beauval
Classed amongst the 15 most beautiful zoos in the world and home to the largest collection of animals in France (4,600 animals), the ZooParc de Beauval is heavily involved in the protection of endangered species, hosting rare and unique animals in France such as manatees, koalas or okapis, to name but a few. The zoo is well known for the quality of its facilities and also for its high number of births (approximately 350 each year), which is a sign of hope for species threatened with extinction in the wild.
Classed as “endangered” by the IUCN red list of threatened species (International Union for the Conservation of Nature), the giant panda is a universal symbol for the conservation of endangered species. The giant pandas will represent a very important flagship for Beauval, as it will not only attract many visitors, but it will be a living message and proof of wildlife protection. To find out more, please visit: www.zoobeauval.com
About FedEx Express
FedEx Express is one of the world’s largest express transportation company, providing fast and reliable delivery to more than 220 countries and territories. FedEx Express uses a global air-and-ground network to speed delivery of time-sensitive shipments, by a definite time and date with a money-back guarantee.
About FedEx Corp.
FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services. With annual revenues of $40 billion, the company offers integrated business applications through operating companies competing collectively and managed collaboratively, under the respected FedEx brand. Consistently ranked among the world’s most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its more than 290,000 team members to remain “absolutely, positively” focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities. For more information, visit news.fedex.com.
About the Boeing 777 Freighter
The Boeing Company produces a complete line of commercial freighter airplanes, including the 777 Freighter. The Boeing 777 Freighter is the world’s largest and most capable twin-engine freighter. The unsurpassed efficiency and flexibility of the 777 Freighter has resulted in a significant number of customer orders, with FedEx Express as the largest customer. FedEx Express has taken delivery of 14 Boeing 777 Freighters and has orders for 31 more.
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