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Underweight panda cub in Wakayama Pref. can now nurse on her own: zoo

A baby female giant panda is seen on her mother Rauhin's chest at the Adventure World zoo in Shirahama, Wakayama Prefecture, on Aug. 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy of Adventure World)

SHIRAHAMA, Wakayama -- A giant panda born at the Adventure World zoo here on the night of Aug. 14 is now able to suckle on her own, the zoo announced on Aug. 17.

When she was born to 17-year-old panda Rauhin, the female cub weighed just 75 grams and was unable to suckle under her own power. Zookeepers kept her in an incubator and fed her milk with a pipette every two hours, and also took her back to Rauhin at regular intervals for observation. The zoo confirmed that the cub was able to take her mother's milk on her own at about 4 p.m. on Aug. 16.

Rauhin has nursed the newborn four times as of the evening of Aug. 17. A staff member said, "I hope to have the cub nurse more frequently if her suckling gets stronger."

The facility also announced that it had confirmed a second cub was stillborn in the small hours of Aug. 16, about 29 hours after the birth of the first cub.

(Japanese original by Saiji Fujita, Tanabe Local Bureau)

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