National Zoo releases footage of Giant Panda’s distress calls (VIDEO)

WASHINGTON – The National Zoo has released a video of Giant Panda Mei Xiang’s making distress calls after her cub died.

The panda keepers say that the mother created a vocalization commonly made under distress at 9:17 a.m. on Sept 23.

Pathologists at the Smithsonian National Zoo performed an autopsy on the cub, called a necropsy, on Monday. While the final pathology report will provide more detail in the coming weeks, the preliminary report shows levels of fluid in the cub’s abdomen and a hardening of its liver.

The cub, born on Sept. 16, appeared to be female, say zookeepers. She weighed a little less than 4 ounces and pathologists found no sign of trauma to the cub.

The panda team at the National Zoo will continue to monitor Mei Xiang using the Panda Cam.

Since the death of her cub, Mei Xiang has been seen cradling an object, as she did before the birth of the cub. Scientists and keepers say this is a natural reaction to express a mothering instinct.

WTOP’s Megan Cloherty contributed to this report. Follow WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)

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