The birth is good news for conservationists worldwide: According to the release, there are fewer than 2,500 red pandas in the wild.
And the new cub is also a “miracle” for its parents, according to the zoo. The baby was born to mother Tilly and father Nam Pang, who died a month before the cub was born. The pair had been matched by an international breeding program but failed to conceive for the past four years. But the caretakers noticed that Tilly only started nesting two weeks after her partner’s death.
“Little Red” will not leave its nest for a few months. But zoo guests can still catch a glimpse of his mother.
“This cub has become a symbol of hope,” Aaron Whitnall, operations coordinator at the zoo, said in the release. “After Nam Pang’s tragic passing, it is more than we ever expected that his memory and legacy will live on.”