A Chinese zoo has unveiled newborn panda triplets billed as the world's first known surviving trio, in what it hailed as a "miracle" given the animal's famously low reproductive rate.
The mother panda, named Juxiao, meaning "chrysanthemum smile," delivered the triplets at Guangzhou's Chimelong Safari Park in the early hours of July 29, but was too exhausted to take care of them afterwards.
Her cubs were then put into incubators while Juxiao regained her strength, and have now been brought back to their mother for nursing and are being attended to by a round-the-clock team of feeders, the zoo said.
"They were said to be the only panda triplets that have ever survived," the safari park said in a statement released Tuesday.
An official from Sichuan Wolong National Natural Reserve, considered the foremost authority on pandas, said the trio were too young to be officially recognized as "surviving" but that they were the only known panda triplets alive.
"We can only say they are surviving once they reach six months. For now they are indeed the only surviving triplets," said an official from the center who only gave her name as Ms. Zhao.
"The triplets can be described as a new wonder of the world," Chimelong Safari Park said, describing mortality rates among newborn pandas as "extremely high."