iPanda News

Female giant panda cub revealed to public for 1st time at zoo in western Japan

10-22-2018 10:51

According to officials at the Adventure World zoo in the town of Shirahama in Wakayama Prefecture, western Japan, mother panda Rauhin, 17, gave birth on Aug. 14 to the little female cub which at the time was only 15.5 centimeters in length and weighed just 75 grams.

The zoo's operator said the birth of the new cub marks the first time a new cub has been born at the zoo in about two years.

According to the zoo, in April, Rauhin mated with a male panda named Eimei.

Eimei, aged 25, or in his mid-70s in human years, is the world's oldest male panda in captivity to have successfully produced offspring through natural breeding, the zoo said.

As the baby panda, which thus far remains nameless, was reveled with its mother in a glass enclosure Thursday, rapturous cheers and applause from the public greeted them both and crowds of people were seen snapping pictures and taking videos on their phones.

The cub had initially been placed in an incubator at the zoo and was not feeding from her mother. The female cub required 24 hour monitoring because her breath was shallow, the zoo said at the time.

Now, however, the beautiful cub has grown to 32.5 centimeters, double its birth length, and weighs 731 grams.

The cub, which has grown more fur recently, is doing well, zoo officials said, and its body temperature has stabilized.

The public are only allowed to view the cub in small groups for 20 minutes at a time between 10:15 a.m. and 2:40 p.m. (local time), the zoo said. They added they may withdraw the cub from the public if she seems tired.

Shiori Kato, 3, who came to see the cub said she was super cute. "I want to take her home with me, she's so cute!" she beamed. "I'd call her 'Kuma-chan' and we could play together," The delighted little girl said.

Kato's sentiment seemed to be reflected by those seeing the little cub for the first time as the crowd kept cooing "kawaii" (meaning cute in Japanese).

The female cub will be named by the public, with the zoo, until Nov. 16, taking suggestions by Internet.