Panda Cub: True Colors

Bai Yun’s cub at 11 days old.

At approximately 2:35 p.m. yesterday, Bai Yun left the den for about five minutes. As Bai Yun gingerly stepped over the cub and left the den, it became very clear that the first signs of this cub’s black-and-white panda marking is evident! A black saddle is clearly beginning to set in across this little cub’s back, and the slightest marks of black around the eyes are apparent.

Born on July 29 at 2:10 p.m., the cub is now almost 12 days old. Thus far, the cub has continued to grow and show us great signs of good health, including lots of loud vocalizations. The appearance on the skin of the panda’s distinctive black-and-white markings is an exciting milestone for this cub, and for all of us. Ultimately, black-and-white fur will cover this little bear, and the patterns on the fur will be the same as what we see now on the skin. Another exciting day at the San Diego Zoo Giant Panda Research Station!

Megan Owen is a conservation program manager for the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research. Read her previous post, Black and White on Horizon.

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