At a press conference on Thursday morning, National Zoo officials announced that the 6-day-old panda cub that died last month passed away because its lungs weren’t fully formed, leading to the cub’s liver not getting enough oxygen.
Zookeepers began removing panda mother Mei Xiang’s nest she had formed for her panda cub on Wednesday, according to NBC Washington. Mei Xiang was reportedly cradling a toy after the cub’s death.
Though initially many were worried the mother had accidentally crushed the panda, which often happens in the wild, officials assured reporters that was not the case with this particular cub.
Kay Steiger is the managing editor of Raw Story. Her contributions have appeared in The American Prospect, The Atlantic, Campus Progress, The Guardian, In These Times, Jezebel, Religion Dispatches, RH Reality Check, and others. You can follow her on Twitter @kaysteiger.
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