Greenville Zoo welcomes baby red panda

The Greenville Zoo announced the birth of a male red panda.
The Greenville Zoo announced the birth of a male red panda. Courtesy of the Greenville Zoo

A new addition arrived at the Greenville Zoo Tuesday.

Collette, 3, and Firecracker, 9, are parents to a baby red panda, born on June 21.

“As a first time mom, Collette is doing a great job,” said Greenville Zoo Director Jeff Bullock. Collette was brought to the zoo from Great Plans Zoo in Sioux Falls as part of a breeding recommendation by the Red Panda Species Survival Plan.

Firecracker came from the Miller Park Zoo in Bloomington, Illinois in 2009.

The male cub, still unnamed, is the 16th red panda born at the Greenville Zoo. Red pandas typically only grow to the size of a house cat and spend most of their lives in trees, the zoo says.

Red Pandas are vulnerable to extinction, the zoo says, as their environment shrinks due to logging and spread of agriculture.

The red panda is native to the mountains of Nepal, northern Myanmar and central China, the zoo says.

Bullock says it may be a few months before zoo guests can see the baby regularly, but "they may catch a glimpse of Collette moving him from one den to another.”

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