The San Diego Zoo’s panda exhibit queue was filled with media and guests this morning to watch Xiao Liwu, the San Diego Zoo’s youngest panda, celebrate his first birthday. The exhibit he shares with his mother, Bai Yun, was filled with a birthday cake, boxes of presents and panda party decorations.
Xiao Liwu cautiously approached his three-tiered ice and bamboo cake flavored with yams, apples, and shaved carrots for the “icing.” It didn’t take long for the curious cub, who is 3 feet, 4 inches tall, to stretch and lick off all the carrot shavings from the 5-foot-tall cake.
Staff from the Zoo began creating the cub’s cake three weeks ago and finished it off with bows made out of bamboo leaves, colored pieces of ice, and a “1” on top. The cake design included a bowl in the bottom tier that was filled with the giant pandas’ favorite fruits and vegetables and was estimated to weigh 175 pounds.