Chinese Giant Pandas Unveiled to Public

HELSINKI (AP) -- Two giant pandas on loan from China have been unveiled at a zoo in central Finland and they have frolicked, galloped, climbed trees and played in the snow after a month-long quarantine.

Hua Bao, a 4-year-old male, and 3-year-old female Jin Baobao arrived in Finland on Jan. 18 and were immediately renamed Pyry ("Snowfall") and Lumi ("Snow") in Finnish. The Ahtari Zoo, 330 kilometers (205 miles) north of Helsinki, built a special Panda House annex for the pair.

China agreed to loan the pandas for 15 years as a gift to Finland, which celebrated 100 years of independence from Russia last year.

China has presented pandas to countries as a sign of goodwill and closer political ties, with Finland being the first Nordic nation to receive them.

(KA)