The panda bear, also known as the giant panda, is native to central China. There are many pandas, however, in zoos across the world, where they are taken care of, as their existence is threatened. Huan Huan is one of these pandas. She lives in Beauval Zoo in Saint-Aignan, France. Huan Huan just had a baby, Mini Yuan Zi, and together they are adorable!
Mini Yuan Zi is the first panda to be born in France. He is named after his father, Yuan Zi. Mini Yuan Zi is two-months-old in these pictures. When pandas are born, they look nothing like what the familiar, chubby, black-and-white furballs we know from television. They are tiny, weighing only about four ounces, which is really tiny compared to their mother- 800 times smaller to be exact! Newborn pandas are also blind, toothless, and have pink skin. After a month, they mature into the black-and-white fur pattern.
Pandas are considered to be a vulnerable species, as human activity such as deforestation removed their habitats. That’s why a certain number of pandas need to be kept in captivity, so they can breed. However, there are issues. In captivity, they do not really feel like breeding. Scientists have taken extreme measures to make them mate, such as showing them videos of other pandas mating and feeding them male enhancement drugs. Also, have used artificial insemination to cause pregnancies.
Technically, panda bears are carnivores, which you can tell from looking at the sharpness of their teeth and their stomach biology. However, their diets consist of 99% bamboo. This level of fiber leads to their having almost forty bowel movements a day. Panda newborns have a hard time passing their waste, and so the mother licking the cub can help with that process. More and more, scientists can learn how to best care for pandas from those who live in zoos.