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Mystery Solved: Why Pandas Are Black and White

Patches are used for camouflage and communication, scientists say

(Newser) - It's a question that has bedeviled kindergartners, and now apparently PhDs have the answer: Why do giant pandas have spots? To find out, a team of California researchers compared the black and white regions of the panda's fur to more than 200 other species, and then analyzed those... More »

Pandas Now Off the Endangered List

They're now listed as 'vulnerable,' WWF says

(Newser) - The animal on the World Wildlife Fund 's logo now represents a rare and very welcome environmental success story. The group says the giant panda has been bumped down a notch in the Red List of Threatened Species and is now classed as "vulnerable" instead of "endangered,... More »

Internet Goes Crazy Over Hidden Panda Image

Can you spot it?

(Newser) - There was the question of when Cheryl's birthday is . The dress that was either white and gold or blue and black . And now the Internet is going insane over a hidden panda, BuzzFeed reports. Illustrator Gergely Dudás, pen name Dudolf, shared an image on Facebook last Wednesday showing... More »

Tiny Panda Cub Twin Dies

Mei Xiang loses the smaller of her two babies

(Newser) - A heartbreaking update to the story of Mei Xiang's panda cubs: The smaller twin born to the National Zoo panda has died. The new mom had started ignoring the smaller cub in favor of nursing the bigger one, and the zoo tweeted today, "We are sad to report... More »

Panda Mom Is Ignoring One of Her New Cubs

Smaller cub in care of vets is having digestive issues

(Newser) - Workers at the National Zoo are continuing to care for one panda cub while the other is safely in the care of its mother—but it appears Mei Xiang has decided she is "not a willing participant" in the zoo's swapping program , reports Smithsonian . Since the twin cubs'... More »

How National Zoo Is Keeping Its Panda Twins Alive

Officials cautiously optimistic about cubs' future, still waiting to exhale

(Newser) - Panda mama Mei Xiang gave birth to a rare healthy cub , then a surprise twin , on Saturday evening, leaving officials at the Smithsonian's National Zoo giddy—perhaps even moreso because the twins are off to a good start thanks to new techniques in panda care. Their sex won't... More »

Surprise! Panda Actually Gave Birth to Twins

Mei Xiang pulls a fast one on the National Zoo

(Newser) - The National Zoo's blessed event yesterday has multiplied by two, with the unexpected addition of a second panda cub, reports the Washington Post . Zoo officials were still celebrating the birth of Mei Xiang's first cub yesterday at 5:34pm—with a rep crowing that the zoo was "... More »

Guy Wins $83K Over Panda Bite

Officials chased a wild bear onto man's lawn in northwestern China

(Newser) - Pandas may prefer their meals in the form of bamboo, but that doesn't mean their bite is toothless. A man in China recently received a harsh reminder of that after a wild panda bit his leg after authorities pursued the critter onto his lawn, reports AFP via Yahoo . The... More »

Circus 'Pandas' Were Really Painted Dogs

Chow chow pups were being used in traveling circus

(Newser) - With more paint and a couple of horses, they could have had zebras, too: A pair of chow chow puppies dyed black and white looked enough like pandas to fool visitors to a traveling circus near Milan, officials in Italy say. Forestry officials—who investigate many animal cases in Italy—... More »

Even Giant Pandas Need Dental Work

Bai Yun's chipped lower canine was repaired on Wednesday

(Newser) - One of the most reproductively successful pandas in captivity is no longer stuck with a chipped tooth. On Wednesday, the San Diego Zoo's giant female panda Bai Yun underwent a procedure to fix a chipped lower canine tooth that could have seriously cut down her bamboo consumption, the Los ... More »

Panda Faked Pregnancy for Extra Bamboo

Research center calls off birth broadcast

(Newser) - A panda research center in China called off what would have been the first-ever live broadcast of a panda birth after determining that panda Ai Hin wasn't pregnant—just crafty. Pregnant pandas at the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding get special treatment, and while "phantom pregnancies"... More »

Baby Panda, Meet Your Mom

Yuan Yuan gets acquainted with Yuan Zai for first time

(Newser) - Having a rough day? Allow little Yuan Zai to help. A video from the Taipei Zoo shows the panda cub being reunited with mom Yuan Yuan for the first time since his birth on July 7, reports . The Huffington Post has more photos. (The UK is on... More »

Red Panda Escapes From National Zoo

Rusty found in DC neighborhood, thanks to Twitter

(Newser) - A red panda from the National Zoo in DC went missing last night, sparking a social media-driven panda-hunt after the zoo tweeted , "We are looking for a missing red panda, a male named Rusty. He was last seen at 6 p.m. last night." @NationalZoo continued to provide... More »

China Welcomes 2013's 1st Panda Cubs

Twins born to Haizi

(Newser) - China has two little bundles of giant panda joy on the ground, twin cubs who were born yesterday to Haizi at the China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda in Sichuan province. One cub is female, notes the AP , and weighs in at a not-so-hefty 2.79 ounces.... More »

Superbug Weapon: Panda Blood?

And, good news, scientists can produce synthetic version

(Newser) - Our latest weapon in the battle against superbugs comes from ... giant pandas? Apparently. Scientists have discovered a potent antibiotic called cathelicidin-AM in the animal's blood. It's released by immune cells there, and Chinese researchers now think it could be used to develop treatments for human diseases—including drug-resistant... More »

Liver Defect May Have Killed Panda Cub

Mei Xiang didn't crush baby girl; zoo 'devastated'

(Newser) - Mei Xiang, the giant panda at Washington's National Zoo who lost her cub yesterday , "was a good mom who protected her cub and did not crush her," says the zoo’s chief veterinarian today. Preliminary necropsy findings did not reveal a cause of death, but did indicate... More »

World's Priciest Tea Made Using Truly Gross Ingredient

Wildlife expert plans to use panda poo to make $36K-per-pound tea

(Newser) - If you thought the world's most expensive coffee was disgustingly weird, you haven't seen anything yet: A wildlife expert in China is trying to make the world's priciest tea. The costly ingredient? Panda poop. An Yanshi plans to use the feces he has collected from a panda... More »

China-Japan Relations Strained By ...Dead Panda?

Japan over-anesthesized China's male days after fishing boat incident

(Newser) - The death of a panda is worsening already-strained diplomatic relations between China and Japan. China loaned Xing Xing, a 14-year-old male, to a Japanese zoo, and he died last week after being anesthetized so zoo workers could collect his sperm for use in artificial insemination. Chinese officials believe the animal... More »

Beloved Panda Killed by Accidental Gassing: China

Quan Quan, mother of 7, inhaled chlorine and carbon monoxide

(Newser) - The death of one of China's most beloved panda bears has been blamed on poison gas resulting from a careless cleaning operation at the Jinan Zoo, the LA TImes reports. Quan Quan, a 21-year-old panda who'd given birth to 7 cubs, inhaled carbon monoxide and chlorine, both of which were... More »

Mama Panda Crushes Baby

Abandoned twin cub survives

(Newser) - The birth of twin pandas at the Beijing Zoo last week gave way to tragedy when the mother abandoned one and accidentally killed the other. Eight-year-old Yinghua delivered two female cubs, but “twins are rare and all mothers take only the first cub as their own,” the zoo... More »

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