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Panda cub described as healthy and vibrant

WASHINGTON (AP) - The giant panda cub at the Smithsonian's National Zoo appears to be in excellent health after a quick physical exam.

Zookeepers got their hands on the panda Sunday morning for the first time since it was born Friday afternoon. A second cub was stillborn Saturday night.

Zoo spokeswoman Pamela Baker-Masson says the live cub is healthy and vibrant. It weighs 4.8 ounces, is pink with white fur and squealed when it was taken away from its mother. The cub had a full stomach, and veterinarians reported that it has been digesting its food. Its heartbeat is steady and its lungs appear to be functioning properly.

The cub's mother, Mei Xiang, gave birth to her only surviving cub in 2005. A cub born last year died after six days.


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