BEIJING: The world’s lightest giant panda has been born in Chengdu, Sichuan province.
According to the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, a female cub about the weight of an average chicken egg was born in the base on Tuesday.
Chengda, an eight-year-old female panda, gave birth to two female cubs that day.
“At 2.41pm, Chengda gave birth to a female cub that weighed 171.9gm. At 6.08pm, it gave birth to the other female cub that weighed 42.8gm, fewer than one-quarter of the weight of its elder sister, and measuring only two-thirds as long,” said base chief Zhang Zhihe.
Before Tuesday, the world’s lightest panda cub was Wuyi, a male panda weighing 51gm when it was born on Aug 7, 2006, in the Chengdu base.
Thanks to milk from two female pandas, Wuyi, whose name means 51 in Chinese, gained weight and by October he was as heavy as his peers.
“His survival is a miracle in the artificial breeding of pandas,” Zhang said.
“When experts and keepers saw the cub weighing 42.8gm on Tuesday, all of them were shocked and were very nervous because its weight was well below average,” Zhang said.
The base set up a panel of experts who are proficient in nursing panda cubs to attend to it round-the-clock.
Although it is in stable condition, there are still many uncertainties, and experts and vets are using their rich experience to help the cub and hope to create another miracle, Zhang said. — China Daily/Asia News Network