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Ya Lun and Xi Lun reach new milestone

Ya Lun and Xi Lun the Giant panda twins have reached a new milestone: all-day play in their dayroom habitat.

The only giant panda twins in the U.S., Ya Lun and Xi Lun, were 6 months old on March 3, 2017, and the duo has reached a new milestone: all-day play in their dayroom habitat in the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation Giant Panda Conservation Center at Zoo Atlanta.

Since making their first appearance in the dayroom with their mother, Lun Lun, in December 2016, the twins have been spending more and more time in the habitat in recent months and now weigh around 22 pounds (Ya Lun) and 21 pounds (Xi Lun). Now both very able runners and climbers, the pair will experience their next milestone – exploring the great outdoors – in coming weeks.

Giant pandas represent Zoo Atlanta’s most significant investment in wildlife conservation. Fewer than 1,900 giant pandas are estimated to remain in the wild in China’s Sichuan, Shaanxi and Gansu provinces. Of these, more than 1,200 live inside nature reserves, eight of which are supported by Zoo Atlanta. In September 2016, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) downgraded the giant panda’s status from “endangered” to “vulnerable.” The species remains heavily reliant on conservation programs, and giant pandas face ongoing threats from habitat fragmentation and habitat loss as a result of deforestation and other human activities.

Born September 3, 2016, the cubs are the sixth and seventh offspring of Lun Lun and Yang Yang. Their older brothers and sisters, Mei Lan, Xi Lan, Po, Mei Lun and Mei Huan, now reside at the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in China.

Check in with Ya Lun, Xi Lun and Lun Lun on PandaCam hosted by Animal Planet L!VE and follow Zoo Atlanta on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for cub updates on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Meet Lun Lun and the twins in a Lun Lun and Cubs Wild Encounter; click here for details and availability.

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