Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Mon Sep 21, 2020 10:16 am

Sep. 18, 2020
#PandaStory: 28 Days Old

Guess who is four weeks old today! After 28 days of devoted care from mother Mei Xiang, our giant panda cub is growing into the species’ signature “plump".
Giant panda Mei Xiang cradles her cub Sept. 13, 2020.
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It’s hard to believe that our giant panda cub is four weeks old! We are encouraged that the newborn appears to be growing well. This is a sign that it is getting good nutrition from mother Mei Xiang’s milk. The cub is getting so big that it is much more visible on the Panda Cam now (especially when getting fed or groomed).
In the wild, a giant panda mother spends much of her cub’s first month of life feeding, holding and keeping it warm. Mei Xiang has followed a similar pattern of behavior. Now that our cub is growing into the pandas’ signature ‘plump,’ it is starting to regulate its own body temperature. At the same time, we are seeing a steady progression in Mei Xiang’s appetite.
This week, she chose to leave her den up to three times a day and for as long as 18 minutes to eat and drink. Mei Xiang has her pick of two species of bamboo to eat, plus leaf eater biscuits, which are calorically dense. As the cub gets older, she will leave for longer periods. Meantime, our panda team continues to offer Mei Xiang juice and water and her favorite fruit—apples and pears—twice daily from the staff space adjacent to her den. When we do so, the Panda Cam is temporarily switched to our adult male, Tian Tian.
Interestingly, Mei Xiang has followed a similar eating schedule with all of her cubs. With Tai Shan (b. 2005), she ate bamboo for the first time since giving birth on day 16. Following Bao Bao (b. 2013) and Bei Bei’s (b. 2015) births, she took her first taste of bamboo on day 14. And, as we noted with this cub in a previous update, she started consuming bamboo when it was 15 days old.
Like many of you, our dedicated team of FONZ volunteers are observing Mei Xiang and her cub’s behaviors from home via the Panda Cam. Over the past week, they have observed Mei Xiang making a “honking” vocalization. Giant pandas make this vocalization occasionally, and both Mei Xiang and Tian Tian have even been observed honking in their sleep!
Usually, a honking vocalization is their way of expressing their surprise, frustration or annoyance at being disturbed in some way. For example, when Mei Xiang was pregnant and quite sensitive to noise, she honked in response to a bird that was loudly tweeting outside her den. She also honked prior to giving birth to this cub as well as all of her previous cubs.
We look forward to the next cub exam to see how the cub has grown!
This story appears in the Sept. 18 issue of the Giant Panda Bulletin. Read previous panda updates here.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Mon Sep 21, 2020 2:26 pm

:vid: https://youtu.be/FlK6QX1-AnE @ youtube 3.04 Minutes
:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... inary-exam @ NZ 3.04 Minutes

#PandaStory: First Veterinary Exam= @1 Month Old
Sep. 21, 2020
This update was written by Laurie Thompson, assistant curator of giant pandas.
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Our giant panda cub has reached a big milestone—today marks one month since its birth Aug. 21! Watching this little one grow under the care of its amazing mother, Mei Xiang, over the past four weeks has been a bright spot in the lives of all who follow their story. We are thrilled to be able to share these joyful moments with fans all over the world.
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On Saturday morning, Sept. 19, Mei Xiang placed her cub on the floor of the den and stepped into the adjacent enclosure. This presented the perfect opportunity to conduct another brief exam on the cub. We closed the door to the den, retrieved the cub and placed it on a soft towel. This time, Zoo veterinarians joined the Panda Team for the exam. The cub weighed 952 grams, or just over two pounds. From nose to tail tip, the cub measured 34 centimeters, or 13.4 inches (its tail accounts for two of those inches).
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Our veterinary team listened to the cub’s heart and lungs, palpated its stomach, tested its suckle reflex and moved all four limbs to assess its musculoskeletal development. They noted that the cub’s eyes are still closed, but the left eye is not closed as tightly and may open soon. (Generally, newborn giant pandas open their eyes between 6 and 8 weeks of age.) All signs point to a healthy and strong cub!
Veterinarians were also able to take a quick swab of our cub’s cheek for DNA analysis. Outwardly, male and female cubs appear similar at birth, so a genetic test is the most accurate way to determine whether our cub is a male or female. They took the swab to our Center for Conservation Genomics, where Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute scientists will confirm the cub’s sex. We should have an answer in the next few weeks.
During the exam, the cub let out quite a few grunts and squeals. One particularly loud squeal caught Mei Xiang’s attention. As she made her way towards the door, we ended the exam and placed the cub back in the den. Once Mei Xiang was reunited with her cub, she immediately picked it up and groomed it. Keepers returned a few moments later to offer her diluted juice, which she happily drank.
This story appears in the Sept. 21 issue of the Giant Panda Bulletin. Read previous panda updates here.
Planning a visit to the Zoo? Please note that Asia Trail—including giant panda viewing—is temporarily closed to visitors for the scheduled repaving of walkways.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Mon Sep 21, 2020 2:28 pm

cont.
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Wed Sep 30, 2020 7:05 pm

:vid: 1 minute https://youtu.be/J956GH-SnjE @youtube OR
:vid: 1 minute https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... am-sept-25 @ zoo
^<
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#PandaStory: Giant Panda Cub Exam (Sept. 25)
Sep. 28, 2020
Check out a video of last week's giant panda cub exam, which took place at the Panda House Sept. 25, 2020! The cub was 35 days old.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Oct 13, 2020 3:26 pm

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:nite: #PandaStory: The Cub’s Growing Girth
Sep. 25, 2020
This update was written by Laurie Thompson, assistant curator of giant pandas.
When Mei Xiang left her den to grab a bite to eat this morning, we had another opportunity to conduct a brief exam on our 1-month-old giant panda cub. The newborn was quite sleepy when we retrieved it from the den and napped through much of the excitement.
As of this morning, the cub weighed 1,337 grams, or just under three pounds. From nose to tail tip, it measured 35.5 centimeters, or 13.9 inches (its tail accounts for two of those inches). For the first time, we had a chance to measure the cub’s abdominal girth as well. It’s back and belly measured 32 centimeters, or 12.5 inches in circumference. Our plump panda cub is almost as round as it is long!
At one month old, our cub relies on Mei Xiang’s milk for all of its nutritional needs. Around 1 year old, bamboo and other solid foods make up the majority of a panda's diet. However, it may nurse for comfort up to 18 months of age.
As I mentioned in my last update, our veterinary team obtained a cheek swab from the cub during its Sept. 19 exam. Our Center for Conservation Genomics is analyzing the cub’s DNA, and we should know definitively in a week or two whether it is a male or female. Stay tuned for that exciting development!
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Oct 13, 2020 3:37 pm

#PandaStory: Six Weeks Old
Oct. 02, 2020

This update was written by giant panda keeper Marty Dearie.
Yesterday morning, giant panda Mei Xiang stepped out of the den, and the panda team retrieved her 6-week-old cub for another quick checkup. During last week’s exam, the cub largely napped through the process. That was not the case with this exam—the cub was wide awake, alert and very vocal while we took its measurements! It weighed 1.66 kilograms (3.6 pounds) and measured 14 inches from nose to tail tip. Its abdominal girth remained steady at 12.5 inches.
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Just like all babies, giant pandas go through spurts of steadiness and growth. All in all, we are very happy with the progress it is making—it is gaining weight and very active. One new and exciting development is that the cub’s eyes are beginning to open! They will be fully open around 8 weeks of age. Giant pandas’ ear canals typically start to open 31 to 50 days after birth. Around 2 months old, the cub’s ears should be fully open.
Our colleagues in the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute’s Center for Conservation Genomics are analyzing the cub’s DNA to determine its sex. We will share that exciting news with you once they confirm the results!
This story appears in the Oct. 2 issue of the Giant Panda Bulletin.
Planning a visit to the Zoo? Please note that Asia Trail—including giant panda viewing—is temporarily closed to visitors for the scheduled repaving of walkways.
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^ < :vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... weeks-old 59 sec Crawling & Vocalizing :bravo:
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Oct 13, 2020 3:51 pm

:rh: :pan: ~~~~It’s a Boy!
Smithsonian’s National Zoo’s Giant Panda Cub Is Male
Oct. 05, 2020
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The Smithsonian’s National Zoo’s 6-week-old giant panda cub is a male, Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) scientists confirmed. During the cub’s first veterinary exam Sept. 19, Zoo veterinarians obtained a swab from his cheek for DNA analysis. Outwardly, male and female cubs appear similar at birth, so a genetic test was the most accurate way to determine the cub’s sex. Veterinarians brought the swab to SCBI’s Center for Conservation Genomics, where scientists sequenced a short fragment of the zinc finger protein gene. The X and Y chromosomes both have this gene, with slightly different DNA sequences. Scientists determined that the swab sample taken by the Zoo’s veterinarians has both sequences present—confirming that the cub is male. A painting created by male giant panda Tian Tian (tee-YEN tee-YEN), the cub’s father, was used to reveal the sex of the cub to giant panda keepers and fans online.
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^< :vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... -weeks-old 1.05 min

:bravo: Daddy Tian Tian
{q.blue & looks like Chinese=male ? :chin: }
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The Zoo will continue to provide updates on the cub on its website, on social media using the hastags #PandaStory and PandaCubdates and in the Giant Panda e-newsletter. Giant panda fans can see the cub, mother Mei Xiang (may-SHONG) and Tian Tian via the Giant Panda Cam on the Zoo’s website.
Zoo veterinarians say that the cub appears to be healthy and strong. During a brief exam conducted by the panda team Oct. 1, keepers took the cub’s measurements. He weighed 3.6 pounds and measured 14 inches from nose to tail tip. His abdominal girth was 12.5 inches. Both of the cub’s eyes are starting to open. Keepers are encouraged by his progress.
At 22 years old, mother Mei Xiang is the oldest giant panda in the United States and the second oldest documented in the world to give birth. SCBI reproductive scientists and Zoo veterinarians performed an artificial insemination on Mei Xiang March 22 with frozen semen collected from Tian Tian, who turned 23 years old Aug. 27. This is the first time a zoo in the United States has experienced a successful pregnancy and birth via artificial insemination using only frozen semen. Zoo veterinarians confirmed evidence of a fetus on an ultrasound Aug. 14 and Aug. 17.
As a public health precaution due to COVID-19, the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute has updated its hours and entry requirements. The panda house at the David M. Rubenstein Family Giant Panda Habitat is currently closed to provide quiet for Mei Xiang and her cub. Asia Trail—including giant panda viewing—is temporarily closed to visitors for the scheduled repaving of walkways.
In addition to this cub, Mei Xiang has given birth to three surviving offspring: Tai Shan (tie-SHON), Bao Bao (BOW BOW) and Bei Bei (BAY BAY). Tai Shan was born July 9, 2005, and moved to China February 2010. Bao Bao was born Aug. 23, 2013, and moved to China in February 2017. Bei Bei was born Aug. 22, 2015, and moved to China in November 2019. As part of the Zoo’s cooperative breeding agreement with the China Wildlife Conservation Association, all cubs born at the Zoo move to China when they are 4 years old. The Zoo’s current cooperative breeding agreement expires in December 2020.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Oct 13, 2020 4:09 pm

#PandaStory: Packing on the Pounds
Oct. 08, 2020[/size]
This update was written by Laurie Thompson, assistant curator of giant pandas.
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After weeks of anticipation, our colleagues at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute’s Center for Conservation Genomics analyzed our giant panda cub’s DNA and determined that we have a male! I am looking forward to the cub taking his first steps in the next few weeks and watching him explore his habitat here at the Zoo. I wonder if his personality will be more like mother Mei Xiang’s or father Tian Tian’s?
The weather was beautiful yesterday, so the panda team set up some of Mei Xiang’s favorite enrichment items in her outdoor yard. (Read all about our giant and red panda enrichment program here.) While she was outside, keepers retrieved her cub from the den for a brief exam.
He was quiet and sleepy while we took his measurements. This week, he seemed to experience a growth spurt. He weighed 2.07 kilograms (4.5 pounds)—nearly a pound more than last week—and measured 15 inches from nose to tail tip. Our plump panda added an entire inch around his midsection! His abdominal girth measured 12.5 inches Sept. 30. Yesterday, that increased to 13.7 inches. All in all, we are happy that our cub is making good gains, and his growth and development are right on track.
The panda team weighs the cub by placing him in a basket atop a scale. He weighed 4.5 pounds Oct. 7, 2020.
As my colleague Marty mentioned in last week’s update, the cub’s eyes have started to open. Now, they are fully open. If you are watching the Giant Panda Cam, you may notice the cub react to the noises around him—his ear canals should be fully open soon!
This story appears in the Oct. 8 issue of the Giant Panda Bulletin.
Scarlett O'Hara in the book "Gone with the Wind" famously boasted about her tiny, 17 inch waist
:ohmy:
q. only a little over 3 inches difference & you can see the 17 on the tape measure in the 1st photo
:nome: :giggle:
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Oct 13, 2020 4:52 pm

cont. better shot of those baby blues >
:grhug:
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Oct 13, 2020 5:17 pm

I caught up with 5 posts today {a lot happened in 13 days}, please scroll back 5 above as he {they found out he is a male} now crawls, eyes have opened, the keepers said he is almost as wide as he is tall=4 1/2 pounds, :w00t: they sure look smaller on computer screen and next to Mama Mei oh & Proud Daddy Tian painted a beautiful blue Chinese painting to reveal cubbie's sex :grhug: When you visit the zoos of course they all really look bigger. :cloud9:
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Oct 20, 2020 5:12 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... feistiness 56 seconds
^<
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This update was written by Laurie Thompson, assistant curator of giant pandas.
#PandaStory: Fruitsicles and Feistiness
Oct. 15, 2020
Tomorrow, our giant panda cub will be eight weeks old! Mei Xiang has always been a devoted mother to her cubs, and this little guy is no exception. She still spends the majority of her time in the den with him. Lately, he’s been practicing crawling in the area where there is no bedding. An ever-watchful mom, Mei Xiang allows her son to let out some of his energy but doesn’t let him venture too far.
Yesterday afternoon, Mei Xiang left the den to eat a fruitsicle—a frozen treat made from diluted apple juice. While she snacked in her large enclosure, keepers entered the den and retrieved the cub for a brief exam.
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I mentioned in my last update that both of his eyes are fully open. This week, it was apparent that his ears are open as well. When keepers entered the den, he vocalized at the sound of the door opening. While he was on the exam table, he turned his head as we called out his measurements to see where our voices were coming from.
He was much more feisty yesterday than he has been for past exams and barked as he was being measured. Since his last weigh-in Oct. 7, he gained a pound. Now, he tips the scales at 2.47 kilograms (5.4 pounds). From the tip of his nose to the base of his tail, he measured 16.5 inches. His biggest gain, however, was around his midsection. He went from a 13.7-inch abdominal girth to 15.9 inches—a 2.2-inch increase!
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Mei Xiang has started carrying her cub to the door and several feet out into the enclosure. Now that he’s getting older, she will start to bring him on these “field trips” more frequently.
This story appears in the Oct. 15 issue of the Giant Panda Bulletin.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Tue Oct 20, 2020 5:20 pm

#PandaStory: Weekend Field Trip
Oct. 19, 2020
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:hug:

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... field-trip 1.13 minutes
^<
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It is remarkable how quickly giant panda cubs grow and change in their first few weeks of life. When our cub was just a few days old, mother Mei Xiang kept him tucked under her armpit or between her forepaws to help keep him warm. In those early days, good glimpses of the cub via the Giant Panda Cam were quite rare.
Nowadays, he is much easier to spot. Although our 8-week-old cub does not nurse as frequently as he did when he was younger, we know from the weekly weigh-ins conducted by our keeper team that he is packing on the pounds. This—along with thick, wooly fur—enables our cub to regulate his own body temperature. He often sleeps on the floor of the den just beside Mei Xiang. From time to time, the pair will playfully nibble at one another.
We have observed Mei Xiang leave her cub in the den while she spends time in the large enclosure eating bamboo and drinking water. Last week, keepers also provided Mei Xiang with one of her favorite diet items—leaf eater biscuits—in a rubber tub. She decided to take her food "to go" and brought the tub into the den for a midnight snack.
As we mentioned in our last update, Mei Xiang brings her cub out of their den for brief “field trips” to the large enclosure. Typically, she carries him out for just a few moments. Over the next few weeks, we expect these field trips to increase in frequency and duration. Meantime, our cub continues to practice crawling. Exercising his muscles and improving his coordination will help him scoot around in the coming weeks. Around three months old, we expect he will take his first steps.
This story appears in the Oct. 19 issue of the Giant Panda Bulletin e-newsletter.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Cubbie today is 60 days old & 40 to go to have 100 day Naming Ceremony {Aug.10+ Sept. 30+ Oct. 20+ = 60 days now
// +11 Oct. left + 29 Nov. = 29th Nov. =100 days}
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Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Thu Oct 22, 2020 9:14 pm

:vid: https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/news ... inary-exam 1.25 minutes
^<
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#PandaStory: Second Veterinary Exam
Oct. 22, 2020

This update was written by Laurie Thompson, assistant curator of giant pandas.
Yesterday, Oct. 21, marked two months since our giant panda cub’s birth. That meant it was time for one of our Zoo veterinarians, Dr. James Steeil, to return to the Panda House to pay him a visit, perform a quick health assessment and administer the cub’s first vaccine.
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Dr. Steeil listened to the cub’s heart and lungs, examined his eyes and ears, and palpated his belly, which appeared to be full. When Dr. Steeil administered the canine distemper vaccine, the cub jumped at the initial prick of the needle, but settled down quickly.
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Although our cub is not able to walk yet, he can push himself up using his forearms and position his hind legs underneath his hips. He has been crawling, and his coordination improves day by day. We expect in another month or so, he will take his first steps.
The cub was quite a wiggle worm while we were taking his measurements! Our plump panda is officially as round as he is long. From the tip of his nose to the base of his tail, he remained steady from last week’s measurement of 16.5 inches (42 centimeters). His abdominal girth measured 16.5 inches as well. He gained half-an-inch around his midsection—up from 15.9 inches Oct. 14. His weight increased from 5.4 pounds to 6.5 pounds.
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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Re: Giant Pandas at the National Zoo ~ Bei Bei and Family

Post by queenie » Thu Oct 22, 2020 9:27 pm

cont. from post just above ^
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q. I think this little guy :pan: loves going to the Doctor, he looks so sweet in these { ^ above included previous post} photos & video! :wub: & he is now officially as long as he is round {& 1/2 inch away from Scarlett O'Hara's 17 inch waist}
Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? ~ ASV Matt. 6:26
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