Wakayama’s Adventure World celebrates its 17th panda birth as the baby’s father breaks a record.

November 22 is also known as “Good Spouse Day” in Japan, and while they can’t get married, it was also a good day for a pair of giant panda mates in Wakayama Prefecture. Slightly before noon, the staff of the Adventure World zoo welcomed their newest resident, with the birth of a male cub for parents Eimei and Rauhin.

This was the 17th panda birth to take place at Adventure World, and Rauhin herself was also born at the facility 20 years ago.

▼ Rauhin nursing her new cub

Despite giant pandas being, obviously, pretty big creatures (Eimei tips the scales at 110 kilograms [242 pounds] and Rauhin is only slightly more svelte at 104), their cubs are remarkably tiny at birth. The as-yet unnamed baby boy weighed just 157 grams (5.5 ounces) and measured 20.5 centimeters (8.1 inches) in length.

As the youngest in the family, the cub has nine brothers and sisters born between Eimei and Rauhin, meaning Eimei has several options should he want to say, “Hey, kid, grab Dad a nice bamboo stalk to snack on.”

In addition, the cub also has six half-brothers and sisters from Eimei’s time with his former mate.

▼ Their extremely broad-branched family tree

The birth is still a landmark in multiple ways, however. At 28 years old, Eimei is now the oldest giant panda to father a child in captivity through natural breeding. Also, while Adventure World’s previous panda birth have involved experts from China’s Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding traveling to Japan to assist, coronavirus-related travel restrictions prevented them from making the trip this time, and so for the first time the baby’s delivery was handled by Adventure World’s staff alone.

Mother and child are both in good spirits, Adventure World says, with the cub gaining weight at a healthy pace.

Source: PR Times (1, 2)
Top image: PR Times
Insert images: PR Times (1, 2)
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