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Rare Giant Panda Born In Captivity Provides Hope For The Species

Jun 14, 2016 By Chris Ledford

Sometimes, Mother Nature needs a little help – especially when it comes to preserving an endangered species like the giant panda. With only 1,864 left in the wild, their very survival is dependent on human assistance. That’s why experts around the world have made it their mission to help breed captive pandas before they go extinct. This is no easy task, as pandas have a very difficult time reproducing in captivity.

That's why what happened last week at the Paira Daiza Zoo in Belgium is virtually a miracle. The zoo had been attempting to get their two pandas, Hao Hao, and her mate, Xing Xui, to breed for the last two years. It seemed the couple was unable to reproduce naturally, so, with assistance from experts in China, they artificially inseminated the mama bear, who gave birth to a healthy baby male last week.

Pictures of the mama bear and her cub have become an internet sensation. The cub currently weighs 6 oz and is hairless, making him look like a "little, pink sausage." It's hard to believe this strange looking creature will grow up to be an enormous panda just like his mother!

Based on an agreement with China, the cub, who hasn't yet been named, will remain at the zoo for at least the next four years. 

Associated Press

Panda births in captivity are very rare, with only six taking place in Europe over the past 20 years.

Associated Press

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According to zoo staff, the mother and her baby are getting along great. Images of Hao Hao carrying her pink, hairless cub have taken the internet by storm.

Associated Press

You can see more of Hao Hao and her baby in the video below.

Don't forget to SHARE the story of this miracle birth with your friends and family!

H/T: LittleThings

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