They are tiny and completely pink, far from the black and white fur of their parents at the moment. On the night from Sunday to Monday, two panda cubs were born at the Beauval Zoo (Loire-et-Cher). Two little plantigrades arrive to enrich the Beauwal panda family, already strong with their mother Huang Huang, their father Yuan Zi and their older brother Yuan Meng, born in 2017.
Two newborns will have final names only in a hundred days. Traditionally, they will be chosen by the First Lady of China. As a sign that birth is part of panda diplomacy, whose name is in Chinese, dasunmao, literally means “big bear-cat”.
China, which in 2012 loaned Yuan Zi and Huan Huan to France for ten years, does indeed use its friendly bicolor bears as symbols of its friendship. Both babies are pink. Both are in perfect health. […] They are great”, responded ZooParc President Rodolphe Delors from the control center of the Panda Breeding and Rescue Center in Beauval. “The first ten days is a sensitive period, but two babies, two little girls are a priori strong, and Huang Huan’s behavior is much better. She has the gestures of a good mother. This is a good birth.” appreciated the zoo’s chief veterinarian Baptiste Mulot, who will not be able to determine with certainty the sex of baby pandas for several days.
Huang Huan’s first signs of anxiety appeared around 5:30 pm on Sunday, alternating between activity and sleep, the waters finally broke at 12:30 pm, and at 01:03 am she gave birth to her cubs. .
A caretaker from the Chengdu Giant Panda Research Center, who came specifically for the birth, managed to take one of the panda cubs to provide care and put him in an incubator. He weighed 149 grams, weight “very reassuring” for little panda. “The bigger they are, the less fragile they are. They are in the high range because at birth they should be between 100 and 150 grams.” explained the vet. The second little female, who spent a little more time with her parent, weighed 128 grams.
Now the guardians will have to monitor the health of Juan Juan and regularly alternate babies with their mothers.. “They will be placed in an incubator and they will take turns suckling their mother. They will be watched around the clock before the public can see them in a few weeks.” explained Rodolphe Delors.
At the end of March, two giant pandas, Huang Huan and Yuan Zi, one of Beauval’s main attractions, attempted to mate. Artificial insemination was also carried out as a precaution, as the female was only fertile for twenty-four to forty-eight hours a year. It was with this technique that Huang Huan gave birth to her first twins, only one of which proved to be viable. Now 4 years old, the first panda born in France now weighs over a hundred kilograms.
No more giant pandas since 2016 “in danger” species listed in the Red Book of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). But the view still remains “vulnerable”while 500 pandas live in captivity and 2000 in the wild in China.