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Excitement over zoo’s giant panda birth

Tuesday, September 18, 2012 - 01:13

Sept. 18 - Giant panda Mei Xiang gives birth to a cub at Washington's National Zoo, ending a seven-year dry spell. Tara Cleary reports.

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THIS EDIT CONTAINS CONVERTED 4:3 MATERIAL Giant panda Mei Xiang reacts to her cub's cries. The new addition to Washington National Zoo was born on September 16th. The zoo's curator of mammals, Dr. Brandie Smith. SOUNDBITE: Dr. Brandie Smith, senior curator of mammals, Washington National Zoo, saying (English): "We haven't had that many good sightings of the panda cub, but we have been able to monitor the cub's health basically by listening to it and by monitoring Mei Xiang's reaction to her cub." Mei Xiang was artificially inseminated in April and although the zoo believed she was pregnant, they couldn't be certain. Zoo director, Dennis Kelly, explains the birth was a long time coming. SOUNDBITE: Dennis Kelly, Director, Washington National Zoo, saying (English): "This is the effort of six years of trying, six years of science and six years of effort to go into this important birth." The panda cub weighs about four ounces or just over 100 grams and can fit in the palm of a hand. Mother and baby are being given complete seclusion and will be monitored via a closed-circuit camera for about two weeks. Those who'd like to catch a glimpse of the panda cub can monitor the National Zoo's website which has an around-the-clock panda-cam.

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Excitement over zoo’s giant panda birth

Tuesday, September 18, 2012 - 01:13