Zoo hoping for baby panda

Staff at Edinburgh Zoo believe that their star resident, Tian Tian the panda, is pregnant and ready to give birth next month.

Tian Tian  is now being carefully monitored for any signs of her going into labour. Expert panda keeper Haiping Hu has flown in from China for the expected birth, to keep a close eye on the situation.

Tian Tian and the zoo’s male mate, Yang Guang, are the UK’s only pair of giant pandas.

p2New incubators have also arrived and keepers are preparing a 24-hour rota to care for any newborns.

Iain Valentine, Director of Giant Pandas for the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, said:  “If indeed she is pregnant, this is an extremely risky time for panda pregnancies. Female giant pandas can actually reabsorb any foetuses or reject them if pregnant.”

Panda cubs are born with their eyes tightly shut and they cry loudly and often, so, fingers crossed, mum and dad can expect many sleepless nights ahead!

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