Shin Shin the panda gives birth in Tokyo zoo

TOKYO Thu Jul 5, 2012 4:11pm IST

A female giant panda Xiannu, named Shin Shin in Japan, is seen through a window glass at Ueno Zoological Park in Tokyo June 28, 2012. REUTERS/Issei Kato

A female giant panda Xiannu, named Shin Shin in Japan, is seen through a window glass at Ueno Zoological Park in Tokyo June 28, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Issei Kato

TOKYO (Reuters) - Shin Shin the panda gave birth to a much-awaited baby at Tokyo's Ueno Zoo on Thursday, the first time a panda has been born there in 24 years.

Shin Shin and her partner Ri Ri, arrived in Tokyo from China in February 2011 and went on view to the public soon after a devastating earthquake and tsunami the following month, providing some welcome good news.

Television footage showed six-year-old Shin Shin holding what appeared to be a tiny object to her chest. Zoo officials said the baby squealed loudly.

"This is a really good thing," a veterinarian who works with the zoo told NHK national television.

Hopes for a baby began after the two pandas were recorded on camera mating earlier this year, and grew over the past month as Shin Shin began showing signs of pregnancy such as a diminished appetite, more time sleeping and hormonal changes.

Keepers at the zoo announced the chance of a pregnancy last week, but with no scientific means of confirming it, they had no choice but to wait for the birth, which took place shortly after noon. The sex of the baby remains unknown.

The birth was the fourth at the zoo but the first to take place after a natural mating, rather than artificial insemination.

(Reporting by Elaine Lies, editing by Paul Casciato)

Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Cinema

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Movie Review

Movie Review

Farah Khan brings back SRK, self-deprecating jokes, six-pack abs and lots of bling.  Full Article 

La Renta's Funeral

La Renta's Funeral

Designer Oscar de la Renta's funeral to be private New York affair.  Full Article 

Stratospheric Career

Stratospheric Career

Matthew McConaughey enjoying his 'Interstellar' career heights.  Full Article 

Horror Role

Horror Role

From 'Bates Motel' to 'Ouija,' Olivia Cooke finds breakout in horror.  Full Article 

Debut Tweet

Debut Tweet

Britain's Queen Elizabeth sends her first tweet.  Full Article 

Job Hunting

Job Hunting

Rebekah Brooks in New York 'explores' job opportunities.  Full Article 

"John Wick"

"John Wick"

Actor Keanu Reeves returns to the dark side in 'John Wick'.  Full Article 

For A Cause

For A Cause

Elton John joins with U.S. agencies on new AIDS programme.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage