Adorable Baby Panda Born In Zoo Gives Amazing New Hope For The Species

Andrea A.

Ueno zoo in Tokyo, Japan, welcomed its newest resident in the middle of June 2017. A baby panda was born, giving new hope for the conservation of this species which has been in danger of extinction for so long.

Source: Tokyo Zoological Park Society

The two happy parents, Shin Shin and Ri Ri, have made it past the difficult two first month of parenthood. As a very fragile species, new born pandas are extremely rare. Ri Ri had previously given birth in 2012, but sadly the baby only survived for 6 days after contracting pneumonia.

Source: Tokyo Zoological Park Society

The panda born last June, a young female, seems to be in good health and growing well. The director of the zoo, Fukada Yutaka, declared:

She's steadily growing. The first month since birth is an unstable period. I think we were able to get through this difficult phase.

Source: Getty Images

During the crucial first three months, it is imperative to keep an eye on the baby panda at all times to guarantee that they are in good health. An expert from China is also following the growth of the young animal to maximize her chance of survival. Pandas in captivity seldom reproduce and every new birth is cause for celebration. These large creatures have a very short reproductive window of only a few days a year, so scientists have created a range of artificial fertilization techniques.Few zoos outside Chinas home pandas, and those that do 'rent' the animals for a set amount of time from the Chinese government for an elevated price. The two pandas in Ueno zoo have been 'lent' to Japan for ten years, costing almost $100,000 a year (£760,000). This money then goes towards the protection of pandas in their natural habitat.

Source: Getty Images

While pandas are no longer listed as an endangered species according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, they are still considered 'vulnerable.'The constant reduction of their habitat by threatens their survival. In addition, bamboo, their main food source, takes more than ten years to grow back once the plant is dead. Pandas can also sadly become collateral damage of traps set for other animals such as snow leopards.

Source: Alain Jocard

There are only 2000 pandas in the wild left in China.To help towards their protection of pandas, you can donate to theWorld Wildlife Fund, here.

H/t: Sciences et Avenir

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