Giant panda gives birth to tiny twins

Kate Moffatt

Conservation authorities are celebrating in China after a giant panda gave birth to tiny twins.

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Six-year-old Ya Li had the sisters last month at the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in the southwestern province of Sichuan, authorities said in a statement.

One weighed a tiny 144 grams, while the other weighed in at just 113 grams.

While it’s not uncommon for a panda to give birth to twins, they are notoriously difficult animals to breed due to their low libidos.

“But twin pandas have been on the rise in recent years with the development of artificial insemination technology,” said AFP. “Female bears' ovulation is closely monitored and sperm from at least two males is often used to increase the chances of a successful insemination.”

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According to the conservation authorities, mum and her two daughters are doing well, though it'll be quite a while yet before the babies start looking less like mice and more like pandas.