Giant Panda In French Zoo Gives Birth To ‘Lively’ Girl Twins

A giant panda has given birth to twin girl cubs, according to a French zoo that said “they are very lively, pink and plump”.

Their mother, Huan Huan, and father, Yuan Zi, were loaned to France from China for 10 years to highlight the good relationship between the two countries.

The Beauval Zoo told French media that the twins were born shortly after 1am local time. They weigh 149 and 129 grams (5.3 and 4.6 ounces).

The babies are their second and third after the first panda ever born in France, Yuan Meng, in 2017.

“Huan Huan is taking care of them very well. She took them in her mouth to lick them and clean them. We can hear little cries,” the zoo stated.

According to the zoo, the sex of the babies was determined by the Chinese professionals taking care of them but would have to be confirmed with full certainty since external genitalia does not appear until they are a few months old.

The wonderful news comes after the zoo proudly announced in March that Huan Huan and Yuan Zi had “mated eight times”.

Experts then carried out artificial insemination “to have as much chance as possible” to see a pregnancy.

Giant pandas are known to have difficulty mating and their pregnancies are not easy to follow.

Image Eric Baccega/AP

Delphine Delord, director of the Beauval Zoo, said:

“We just lived a moment of rare intensity. These births are always very exceptional but they also bring some surprises.”

Image: Guillaume Souvant/AFP

The twins will not be named before turning 100 days.

They will live in France for a few years before being sent to China, according to the Zoo.

There are about 1800 pandas living in the Chinese wilderness and about 500 are held in captivity worldwide.

In recent times, China has been loaning pandas to zoos on commercial terms.

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