Kai Kai and Jia Jia celebrate birthdays at the River Safari, fail to produce baby yet again

Kai Kai, who turns 10 on Sept 14,  received a frozen cake decorated with chopped carrots and red apples to mark the occasion.
Kai Kai, who turns 10 on Sept 14, received a frozen cake decorated with chopped carrots and red apples to mark the occasion. PHOTO: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE
Jia Jia, who turns 10 on Sept 14,  received a frozen cake decorated with chopped carrots and red apples to mark the occasion.
Jia Jia, who turns 10 on Sept 14, received a frozen cake decorated with chopped carrots and red apples to mark the occasion. PHOTO: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE
Over 100 River Safari visitors witnessed the birthday party of Kai Kai and Jia Jia.
Over 100 River Safari visitors witnessed the birthday party of Kai Kai and Jia Jia. PHOTO: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE
Over 100 River Safari visitors witnessed the birthday party of Kai Kai and Jia Jia.
Over 100 River Safari visitors witnessed the birthday party of Kai Kai and Jia Jia. PHOTO: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

SINGAPORE - Iconic black-and-white duo Kai Kai and Jia Jia celebrated their birthdays at the River Safari on Wednesday (Sept 6) afternoon.

Kai Kai turns 10 on Sept 14, while Jia Jia turned nine on Sept 3.

They received frozen cakes decorated with chopped carrots and red apples to mark the occasion, with Jia Jia's lightly drizzled with honey and Kai Kai's topped with a green apple.

Over 100 River Safari visitors witnessed the birthday party, including one-year-old Mikayla Fong.

Her parents said:"Mikayla is also celebrating her birthday today. We wish Kai Kai and Jia Jia continued good health and hope they have a panda baby in the future!"

The pandas have been unsuccessful in producing a baby with both natural methods and artificial insemination.

They entered their third mating season in March.

Breeding techniques that have proven successful in other zoos will continue to be employed by vets and keepers.

Wildlife Reserves Singapore senior veterinarian Dr Abraham Mathew said:"After conducting several tests, we conclude that Jia Jia will not be having a panda baby this year."

He added that it was "heartening" that they have managed to help the pandas maintain a regular estrous cycle - which refers to when they are sexually active - under controlled conditions, similar to their native habitat in Chengdu, China.

"The vets and keepers remain encouraged, and we will continue keeping them in tip top condition ahead of next year's breeding season."