Giant panda Mei Xiang has given birth to a pair of cubs at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington.
Watch this short news clip and answer the questions below. The activity is suitable for Intermediate 1 and Intermdiate 2 students.
1 What time was the first cub born?
2 And the second one?
3 Where was one cub placed after the birth of the second panda?
4 What happened in 2005 and 2013?
5 What are the names of the new-borns?
6 How many giant pandas live in the wild?
Double the panda cuteness. Giant panda Mei Xiang has given birth to a pair of cubs at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington.
Mei gave birth to (1) her first cub at 5:34 p.m. after her waters broke about an hour beforehand. And about four and one-half hours later, (2) at 10:07 p.m., a second cub arrived and both appear to be healthy.
Zoo officials said Mei picked up the cub soon after giving birth and is being "a great mother". After the second surprise birth, one cub was placed (3) in an incubator in line with protocol when twins are born.
(4) Mei has previously given birth to two surviving cubs: Tai Shan in 2005 and Bao Bao in 2013. She was artificially inseminated with frozen sperm from a panda in China, and fresh sperm from the National Zoo's male panda. The gender of the cubs and which of the sperm donors is the father will be determined later. (5) No decision has yet been made yet about naming the cubs.
With a very low reproductive rate, particularly in captivity, panda's natural home is in a few mountain ranges in central China. There are (6) around 1,600 giant pandas known to be living in the wild and some 300 in captivity, mostly in China.