The world's oldest giant panda living in captivity celebrated her 37th birthday on Wednesday in China. Basi had an official birthday party at Strait Panda World in Fuzhou wearing a crown and enjoying her special birthday cake.
"Even though she is 37 years old, her fur is still pearly white, a sign of beauty for pandas," Chen Yucun, Director of Strait Panda World told MailOnline. He also added that Basi would most likely live for another three to five years.
Born in 1980, Basi is possibly the most famous panda on the Chinese mainland. She got her name after being rescued from Basi Gorge in Baoxing County of southwest China's Sichuan Province. In 1990, she was chosen as the model for Pan Pan, the mascot of the Beijing Asian Games. In her early days, Basi was trained to lift weights, ride bikes and shoot hoops by trainers.
In 1987, Basi visited the San Diego Zoo in America and attracted around 2.5 million visitors during her stay over there. According to Chen, she's one of only three giant pandas to have reached this age, which is more than 100 in human terms. The other two pandas have passed away.
'It is hard to put an exact conversion rate between panda years and human years. But most pandas start having health issues, such as heart diseases, when they are around 20 years old, and human being usually get the illnesses when they are around 80 years old," Chen said.
But he added that when compared with ten years ago, Basi's heart beat has dropped from 110 per minute to 60 per minute and she does much less sports than before.
Xinhua, the state-run news agency, reported that Basi's activity time is usually less than an hour every day. She spends 21 hours asleep, but she has a good appetite and her weight stays around 100 kg.
"Right now for Basi, every day well spent is considered a victory," Chen said. "She is old. She sleeps 80 per cent of the day. When she is awake, she eats."
"Our biggest worries are angiosclerosis and hypertension. We fear she may suffer sudden angiorrhexis," he added.
Chen also said: "We have four people taking turns to take care of her and six surveillance cameras to monitor her activities. We hope she will become the most long-lived panda."