AUG 06, 2017 7:20 AM PDT

Only One of Beauval Zoo's Giant Panda Cub Twins Survives After Birth

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

A female giant panda named Huan Huan located at Beauval Zoo in France had been expecting twins, and on Friday, the mother finally delivered her babies.

An exhausted giant panda rests in a tree.

Image Credit: christels/Pixabay

With giant panda experts from China at the scene to assist the zoo staff during the birth, there were high hopes that they could help both cub twins survive. Unfortunately, hearts were tragically broken when one of the cubs passed away just shortly after birth.

According to several reports, the first cub to see the light was significantly weaker than the second. Huan Huan catered to her first-born just until it was time to deliver the second almost 14 minutes later.

As soon as the first cub was born, the experts could already tell there were problems with its health; then came the second, which was in much better health than the original.

Huan Huan quickly chose to care for the second-born cub, abandoning the first.

While it sounds morbid, this is a common practice of giant pandas in the wild. The mother caters for the stronger of two twins and leaves the other to fall through the cracks naturally. It helps ensure the strongest of the two can survive, and that no energy gets wasted on the weaker of the two.

Related: Here's why researchers think giant pandas have black and white fur

Despite what appears to be a sad story for the first cub, experts say the second is fortunate to be in excellent health and should survive. It’s a huge accomplishment for Beauval Zoo, especially since it’s the first giant panda cub ever born in France.

The cub doesn’t have a name yet, but monitoring will continue for about a week to ensure it stays in good health. After that week, the experts from China will return home, and the zoo staff will be responsible for taking care of it.

Beauval Zoo won’t be caring for Huan Huan or her cub forever, as they’re on loan. The cub will be shipped to China after it reaches two or three years old, while Huan Huan and her mate Yuan Zi will follow in 2022.

Giant pandas used to be an endangered species, but conservation efforts recently helped to move their rank to vulnerable, which is a bit less critical. Every new giant panda cub born into our world helps replenish their numbers.

Source: Reuters

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
JUN 05, 2020
Plants & Animals
World Environment Day 2020 Celebrates Biodiversity
JUN 05, 2020
World Environment Day 2020 Celebrates Biodiversity
Today is World Environment Day, and this year’s theme is biodiversity. As defined by the United Nations (UN), biod ...
JUN 08, 2020
Earth & The Environment
Prevent Ocean Pollution by Switching Laundry Cycles
JUN 08, 2020
Prevent Ocean Pollution by Switching Laundry Cycles
According to new research from Northumbria University, England, nearly 13,000 metric tons of microfibers are released in ...
JUN 16, 2020
Plants & Animals
Desperate Polar Bear Mother Weighs Risks of Attacking Dangerous Walruses
JUN 16, 2020
Desperate Polar Bear Mother Weighs Risks of Attacking Dangerous Walruses
Polar bears are being subjected to severe living conditions as the Arctic’s ice caps continue to melt, and without ...
AUG 04, 2020
Genetics & Genomics
A Hybrid Animal - the Sturddlefish - Is Created
AUG 04, 2020
A Hybrid Animal - the Sturddlefish - Is Created
Scientists, for reasons that are unclear, mixed eggs and sperm from two different species of fish and ended up creating ...
AUG 18, 2020
Immunology
How Dolphins Could Help Us Live Longer
AUG 18, 2020
How Dolphins Could Help Us Live Longer
Dolphins are helping scientists answer the age-old question: can we stop the clock when it comes to aging? A recent stud ...
SEP 17, 2020
Microbiology
Animals May Sense the Magnetic Field Because of Bacteria
SEP 17, 2020
Animals May Sense the Magnetic Field Because of Bacteria
Animals can sense magnetism, an ability called magnetoreception. Scientists have been trying to understand this sense, w ...
Loading Comments...