Zookeepers at National Zoo say the newborn pandas are likely to survive


On Sunday, the pregnant panda at the National Zoo gave birth to twins. The mother, Mei Xian was artificially inseminated in April. The gender and paternity of the newborns is not yet known. They will be cared for by veterinarians and panda keepers. The panda team’s plan is to alternate the cubs between spending time with their mother, and staying in an incubator. Pandas are not usually able to care for twins, and allow one of the twins to starve while they nurse the other. To avoid this, the panda team will give the cubs turns nursing from their mother, bottle-feeding them if necessary. Mei Xiang has two older children who are alive and well, but historically there have been more deaths than survivals among cubs born in Washington D.C.


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