Remaining panda cub healthy at National Zoo after twin dies

In this photo provided by the Smithsonian's National Zoo, one of the giant panda cubs is examined by veterinarians after being born at Smithsonian's National Zoo on Saturday, Aug. 22, 2015, in Washington. The National Zoo in Washington says its adult female panda has had twins. (Becky Malinsky/Smithsonian's National Zoo via AP)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Animal keepers say the National Zoo’s remaining newborn panda cub is healthy and was active and nursing through the night after the cub’s smaller twin died.

The zoo said Thursday that panda mother Mei Xiang is showing proper maternal care. She’s been having short sleep cycles and adjusting the tiny cub in her arms for better positioning and grooming.

Panda keepers say the staff heard strong vocalizations from the cub overnight and observed it a couple of times. The cub is growing more hair. Keepers say it looks healthy with a plump tail.

The smaller of the twin cubs died Wednesday after animal keepers retrieved it from Mei Xiang in the morning. The zoo said the exact cause of death has not been determined.

 

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