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Mei Xiang Artificially Inseminated

/ Post by Pandas International

Mei Xiang, the Smithsonian National Zoo’s female Giant Panda, was left alone to try to mate with male Tian Tian during her breeding cycle but, once again, the two pandas were not successful in mating on their own.  Mei Xiang has given birth to two cubs in the past. The first, Tai Shan, was born in 2005 and is now at the China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda. The second cub died one week after it was born last year.

A team of veterinarians artificially inseminated Mei Xiang on Saturday.  Says Dave Wildt, head of the Center for Species Survival at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, “We are hopeful that our breeding efforts will be successful this year, and we’re encouraged by all the behaviors and hormonal data we’ve seen so far.” It will be several months before they know if the efforts were successful and Mei Xiang is pregnant.