Yuanzai on the move as panda cub slowly but surely practices walking


TAIPEI — Giant panda cub Yuanzai, of Taipei Zoo, has been making steady progress in walking, and as her limbs gain strength she can now keep herself upright and walk longer distances.

In a video released by the zoo Sunday, the cub is seen taking baby steps in her cage. With her front limbs stronger than those at the back, the cub seems to be struggling to remain standing and reach across a small patch of wooden floor without falling flat on her stomach with her limbs splayed apart.

Yuanzai has, however, improved with time and her back limbs are stronger, enabling her to walk farther. In fact, she managed several times to toddle past the edge of the wooden floor towards encouraging zookeepers.

Yuanzai has been thriving under the care of her mother, giant panda Yuan Yuan, and the zookeepers. She now weighs slightly over six kilograms, compared to just 183.4 grams at her birth on July 6. She has also begun teething.

Meanwhile, zoo officials reminded the public on Sunday to cast their votes for the cub’s formal name soon, as online voting ends on Oct. 15.

The cub’s current nickname, Yuanzai, has remained the top choice for most voters.