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Smithsonian's conservation center welcomes 3 new red pandas to Front Royal location

Say hello to Scarlet, Xena and Taizong!

FRONT ROYAL, Va. — The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute has welcomed three new red pandas at its Front Royal campus in Virginia.

The red pandas named Scarlet, Xena, and Taizong are at the just arrived to breed and help scientists better understand their health, National Zoo officials said.

The trio has been described as sweet and outgoing with each of them having their own adorable quirks that set them apart.

Scarlet, a 2-year-old red panda, enjoys when the zoo keepers hide her food in a ball pit. She has fun as she digs around for her treats and spills the balls everywhere in the process, zoo keepers said.

Taizong, who is 1-year-old, is also very food motivated in addition to his very sweet nature, keeprs said.

Keepers described Xena as tiny and feisty. One of her keepers says she is fearless - a lot like Xena, the mighty warrior princess from TV.

The red pandas arrival at the zoo is a part of the Species Survival Plan. Through the plan, scientists match red pandas by looking at their genetics to ensure a pair's offspring are as genetically diverse as possible.

Though the public cannot visit the trio at their new home, people can still meet two other red pandas, named Asa and Chris-Anne, at the National Zoo in D.C. 

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