Giant panda gives birth to rare twin cubs at Japan's oldest zoo

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Japan just became home to two tiny and adorable panda cubs.

Early Wednesday, the Ueno Zoo reported that the rare giant panda Shin Shin gave birth to twins.

"Baby giant pandas are very small when they're born, so the staff will be watching over them around the clock for a while to make sure they will be growing healthily," zoo director Yutaka Fukuda said in a news conference.

Shin Shin, 15, arrived at Japan's oldest zoo in 2011 and last gave birth to a cub, Xiang Xiang, in 2017. The sex and weight of the twin cubs remains unknown.

A zoo staff member places one of the newly born twin pandas into an incubator at Ueno Zoo in Tokyo on Wednesday.
A zoo staff member places one of the newly born twin pandas into an incubator at Ueno Zoo in Tokyo on Wednesday.

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Because giant panda twins are rare, the zoo has kept one of the newborns in an incubator while the other finishes feeding, according to CBS News.

"It is said that in most cases, when twins are born, only one will grow up. In order to raise both of them, we need to have one panda always be held by Shin Shin. We will have them take turns to nurse while the other one will be in an incubator," said the zoo's spokesperson, Naoya Ohashi.

Ueno Zoological Gardens staff Naoya Ohashi shows an image of giant panda Shin Shin giving birth to the first of her twin cubs at Tokyo's Ueno Zoo.
Ueno Zoological Gardens staff Naoya Ohashi shows an image of giant panda Shin Shin giving birth to the first of her twin cubs at Tokyo's Ueno Zoo.

Follow Gabriela Miranda on Twitter: @itsgabbymiranda

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Giant panda gives birth two rare twin cubs in Japan zoo

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