Japan sends giant panda 'home' to China

STORY: Some 60,000 people applied for 2,600 spots to see Xiang Xiang on Sunday (February 19), her last day on view, with a few women in tears as they watched her snack on bamboo.

A hugely popular attraction at Tokyo's Ueno Zoo since her birth there nearly six years ago, Xiang Xiang was sent to China on Tuesday under an agreement in which giant pandas are loaned to zoos around the world but China maintains ownership of any such loaned bears and their offspring.

"I would like to thank, from the bottom of my heart, the many people who watched Xiang Xiang's growth and loved her. Thank you very much," said Head of Ueno Zoo, Yutaka Fukuda.