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Panda cub is reunited with mother at Zoo Atlanta

September 2, 2008 |  6:21 pm

Lun_lun_and_baby_at_zoo_atlantaOfficials at Zoo Atlanta  said today that the male giant panda born this weekend is in “guarded” condition. It was placed in an incubator for a time because its mother, Lun Lun, had put it down twice and the cub had lost body heat. Then it was returned to its mother this afternoon. (The video displayed to the right on L.A. Unleashed is of a mother and child reunion.) The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports:

Less than a day after being separated from his mother because of a health scare, Zoo Atlanta's newest panda is back with his mom, Lun Lun.

Officials reintroduced the pair Tuesday afternoon after the male cub spent much of the previous 19 hours in an incubator. The zoo was trying to get the newborn’s body temperature up and provide some much needed nourishment.

“Lun Lun showed immediate interest in the cub when it was presented just outside the den, and was very focused on the cub as it vocalized,” the zoo said. “Based on these positive signs, the cub was placed in the den and Lun Lun picked it up and cradled it.”

The cub was removed from Lun Lun’s care late Monday after the zoo’s favorite mom twice put down her small offspring....

Panda cubs can lose body heat rapidly, a serious threat to their health during their early days.

Zoo officials think part of the problem is that Lun Lun may not have been creating enough mother’s milk. The milk provides antibodies to fight off infections during the cub’s first few days.

Since being reintroduced, the cub has periodically vocalized strongly, a positive sign, the zoo said. When caretakers examined him at 4:30 p.m., the infant, which is about the size of a cellphone, had gained a little weight. They also noted that there were no signs of abnormalities or bacteria in the cub because of the hand-rearing process.

Photo: Zoo Atlanta

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