New panda cub is a girl and Tian Tian is the dad - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

New panda cub is a girl and Tian Tian is the dad

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WASHINGTON, DC -

We knew the National Zoo's tiny panda cub was vocal. Thursday, we learned much more about it - including that "it" is actually a "she". After a genetic analysis, scientists have also determined the identity of the cub's father.

Mom Mei Xiang was artificially inseminated with sperm from two adult males. One is Tian Tian from the National Zoo and the other is Gao Gao, a giant panda from the San Diego Zoo. Turns out Tian Tian is the father.

The cub appears healthy and will have another check-up in a few weeks. She is already changing fast.

"When it was born it was just kind of pale pink not many markings. We're starting to see that it's a little bit fuzzy. It's got those great black and white markings that are coming in. The eye and the ear spots started coming in first. And now we can see the saddle forming across its back. So it is just beautiful. She is just beautiful. I have to get used to saying she," says Senior Curator Brandie Smith.

It'll be about four months until the public can see the panda in person.


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