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As Tai Shan leaves, remember his keepers

By Ed O'Keefe

The National Zoo's baby panda, Tai Shan, is headed back to China early next year. The widly popular bear is supported by dozens of veterinarians, zoo keepers, animal reproductive experts and volunteers based at the National Zoo in Northwest Washington and at the Conservation and Research Center in Front Royal, Va.

Watch The Eye's video profile above of panda support staff (which first appeared in May). Staffers once again tried unsuccessfully earlier this year to impregnate Tai Shan's mother, Mei Xiang. You'll see staffers and volunteers discuss her pregnancy status, why it's so difficult to determine a panda pregnancy, and talk about the popularity of their black and white friends.

Special thanks to Zoo spokeswoman Sarah Taylor, primates and pandas curator Lisa Stevens, lead veterinarian Suzan Murray and Janine Brown and her staff in the Reproductive and Endocronology Laboratory in Front Royal.

Know of other federal employees The Eye should profile? E-mail your ideas

By Ed O'Keefe  | December 4, 2009; 10:50 AM ET
Categories:  Agencies and Departments  
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