Captivated by an endearing sight, visitors at a zoo in China captured the adorable moment when a panda joyfully engaged with an umbrella that accidentally fell into its enclosure.

The panda, called Ji, refused to let go of the umbrella even when keepers lowered a net to try and retrieve it. Ji even managed to accidentally open the umbrella while playing at the zoo in Chengdu, the capital of the Chinese province of Sichuan. The new plaything attracted the attention of two other pandas, but Ji refused to give the umbrella up.

The panda was seen chewing the umbrella, so it was swiftly removed so it would not be injured by the metal frame or by ingesting the material. It’s not clear whether the person who dropped their umbrella got it back – or even if it was still working once Ji the panda was finished with it.

VIDEO:

The Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, where the incident happened, is a public, non-profit breeding and research institute for giant pandas, red pandas, and other rare animals.

It was founded in 1987 by the Chengdu Municipal People’s Government and started with six giant pandas that were rescued from the wild.

Giant panda plays with a tourist umbrella in Chengdu, Sichuan Province in China, undated. The security guard tried to grab it. (2033663868/AsiaWire)

 

Ji is having a whale of a time (Picture: /AsiaWire)

By 2008, it had 124 panda births, and the captive panda population has since grown to 83.

Its stated goal is to ‘be a world-class research facility, conservation education centre, and international educational tourism destination’.