TAIPEI, Taiwan, Dec. 22 (UPI) -- Officials at a Taiwanese zoo said they had a scare when a giant panda swallowed a hypodermic needle, but the object came out the other end safely.
The Taipei Zoo said a 2-year-old panda named Yuan Zai swallowed the syringe that was in her arm while zookeepers were taking a routine blood sample.
Handlers were unable to wrestle the syringe and nearly 1-inch needle out of the panda's mouth before she swallowed, so she was sedated and taken to an animal hospital.
Veterinarians said X-ray images confirmed the needle was traveling through the panda's digestive tract and hadn't caused any damage to her esophagus.
Zookeepers said giant pandas have fast-moving digestive tracts, so Yuan Zai passed the syringe and needle with her excrement before a surgery could be planned.
The panda is not believed to have been injured by the object's journey through her body.