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Saving the Giant Panda, One Cub at a Time

Did you know panda cubs are the smallest newborns in the bear species? Newborn cubs weigh 4 to 8 ounces and are about 6 to 8 inches long. They are born pink, with almost no hair, and blind. They are very fragile and defenseless and they often come in pairs.

Twins are common in Giant Pandas, but when twins are born, mother pandas cannot care for both cubs. In the wild, the stronger cub is selected. For an animal that’s endangered, this does not bode well for the species.

Luckily, the mother will accept both babies, but only one at a time, so veterinarians developed a method to exchange the cubs— “cub swapping.” The caretakers leave one cub with the mother for her to care for and place one in an incubator. After a day, the cubs are exchanged so both cubs will bond with their mother and receive her care. This process of exchanging the cubs, allows both of the cubs to survive in captivity, but they are in need of formula to survive.

With your support, GreaterGood.org has delivered twenty 10kg bags of formula, totaling up to 50 months of feeding for 1 panda, helping panda moms like Guo Guo.

Guo Guo, a beautiful Giant Panda, lived in the Wolong Panda Reserve in the Qiong Lai Mountains. On the morning of May 12, 2008, she was enjoying the morning sunshine when the world around her came crashing down.

Guo Guo had no idea what was happening but could feel something was very wrong. The ground below her was shaking violently and huge rocks were flying in the air. She had never experienced anything like this before in her life at Wolong. She had always enjoyed the clean mountain air and crisp cool mornings, but now something was horribly wrong.

When the earthquake struck, Guo Guo was 54 days pregnant with a panda cub. Guo Guo had to be evacuated to the Bifengxia Panda Base, a sister center in Wolong where she was safe and could rest.

On July 6, 2008, after her rescue from the earthquake and her dangerous evacuation, Guo Guo miraculously gave birth to twins; Ping Ping (the female) and An An (the male).

Since they were twins, Guo Guo could not take care of both cubs at one time, so this Bifengxia staff helped her out by “cub swapping”

Without your donations and the milk formula they provided, one of these miracle cubs would not have survived. Thank YOU!