City Desk

The National Zoo’s Baby Panda Has a Name: Bao Bao

Screenshot from Panda Cam right before the cub was named.

Screenshot from Panda Cam right before the cub was named.

One hundred days after its birth, the baby panda at the National Zoo finally got a name today: Bao Bao, which means "precious" or "treasure."

The name was announced during a ceremony at the National Zoo featuring speeches from State Department representatives and the ambassador from China, which owns the cub. First lady Michelle Obama and the first lady of China appeared in video messages at the event, declaring the panda a symbol of the growing relations between the U.S. and China.

Bao Bao and her mother, Mei Xiang, were not present at the ceremony. The cub will go on display in January, and will be returned to China when she turns four.

More than 120,000 people voted online to select the name of the cub, with Bao Bao beating out Ling Hua, Long Yun, Mulan, and Zhen Bao.

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