Seriously, is there anything cuter than giant panda cubs? I can’t think of anything, and that includes Pallas’s Cat kittens. Take 3½ minutes to watch this video from the Toronto Zoo, showing the first year in the life of two new cubs. The YouTube description:
On October 13, 2015 the Toronto Zoo announced the birth of the first giant panda cubs born in Canada. Both Jia Panpan (Canadian Hope) and Jia Yueyue (Canadian Joy) have been a delight to watch as they have grown from two very small and vulnerable cubs to healthy and thriving youngsters and Toronto Zoo staff have appreciated each and every milestone they have reached. The challenges balanced with the number of joyous moments over the last 365 days have provided a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for us here at the Toronto Zoo, and we are thankful to everyone who shared it with us along the way.
Now my hope would be that these cubs would be returned to the wild, but I suspect that’s not on: they’ll serve as entertainment and as a source of dosh for the zoo. But these animals belong in the wild (granted, their habitat is vanishing), so what are we doing confining them in jails for their whole lives?
Panda fact: their scientific name is Ailuropoda melanoleuca, which means “cat-footed black and white” (remember that fear of cats is “ailurophobia”).