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Panda cub Bao Bao may soon start venturing outside with mom at National Zoo

The National Zoo says giant panda cub Bao Bao (bow-bow) may soon start venturing outside for the first time with her mother.

The zoo said Monday that Bao Bao will have access to her mother Mei Xiang's (may-SHONG) yard this week beginning each day about 8 a.m.

Zookeepers say she'll have the option of going outside if the temperature is at least 35 degrees and it's not raining or snowing.

Animal keepers have "cub-proofed" the panda yards. They placed collars on trees to prevent Bao Bao from climbing too high. Some tree limbs have been trimmed, and the keepers spread out bales of hay to cushion any falls.

While she'll have the option of going outside, zookeepers say it may take several weeks before Bao Bao is venturing outside regularly.

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