Our panda team observed Mei Xiang and her cub overnight and were happy with the behaviors they saw. As expected, Mei Xiang is being an excellent and attentive mother. She has already established positions for nursing and sleeping. Via the Panda Cam, the team watches Mei Xiang nurse her cub while sitting at the back of the den—often with her knee propped up on the wall—and sleep with it tucked in between her arms.
Mei Xiang and her newborn are getting into a good routine. Assistant curator Laurie Thompson observed that Mei Xiang seems to be able to get more rest with this cub. In previous years, Bao Bao and Bei Bei would vocalize when she attempted to lie down on her side.
Since birth, the cub has been vocalizing regularly with grunts and squeals. As time goes on, keepers are seeing more glimpses of it as Mei Xiang changes position. From what the team has observed so far, it appears to be strong and healthy! On behalf of the panda team and all of us at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute, thank you for your well wishes and support.
This story appears in the Aug. 23 issue of the Giant Panda Bulletin.