A GIANT panda has given birth to twins – which are “extremely rare” for the species.
Hao Hao, their mother, was inseminated in April and gave birth to the tiny pair on Thursday, with each being born a few hours apart.
The newborn cubs receive a hug from their mum Hao Hao[/caption]
One of the two-day-old twins is given a drink from a bottle at feeding time[/caption]
Both cubs – a boy and girl – were born at the Pairi Daiza Zoo in Belgium and are being bottle fed to let their mum rest.
The babies, described as “pink shrimp”, are hairless, pink and 1/900th the size of their mother when they are born.
They will be watched around the clock to ensure their survival and could be alternately place in an incubator.
Eric Domb, the president and founder of Pairi Daiza, said: “This double birth is wonderful news for this extraordinary species that is still threatened today.”
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Hao Hao was loaned to the park by China in 2014, and gave birth to a male cub three years ago.
China established an international program for the conservation of giant pandas, according to the zoo.
The animals’ status was changed from endangered to vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature in 2016.
The panda twins are almost hairless[/caption]
One of the cubs has its umbilical cord cut by a member of zoo staff[/caption]
The tiny panda tots are just a fraction of the size of their mother[/caption]
The twins are being monitored around the clock to ensure their survival[/caption]
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