The Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in Sichuan, China recently announced that they have 14 tiny, fluffy, adorable panda cubs! Born at the center between July and September this year, the cubs are a welcome addition to the sparse population of just 1,600 pandas around the world.
Classified as endangered since 1990, the solitary bears are extremely difficult to breed – not to mention their cubs are exceptionally fickle and often die within the first few weeks of birth. This is evidenced by the fact the center actually had 20 births throughout the year, but only these 14 survived.
Luckily for the panda population, this year has been exceptionally successful when it comes to new births. The National Zoo welcomed a newborn panda last month and the Atlanta Zoo is now home to a pair of twins that were born in July. While they both received publicity for their new arrivals, it’s clear there is no competing with 14 cute baby pandas in one place.
Ranging from 1.5 pounds to 9 pounds, the cubs were all created using artificial methods. This is unsurprising when you consider that female pandas are “receptive to breeding” for only two or three days a year. Even though a female will leave scent marks to alert males that she is in heat, successful breeding often boils down to being in the right place at the right time.
Images by ecns