Shutdown means no peeking at panda cub


The National Zoo’s panda cub, shown at last week’s vet exam, will get a break from the cams. (Abby Wood/Smithsonian's National Zoo)
October 1, 2013

The National Zoo’s giant pandas are getting some privacy. Tuesday’s shutdown of the federal government meant that the unnamed cub and her mom, Mei Xiang, will not have cameras filming their every move 24 hours a day.

The popular panda cams — and all other live animal cameras at the zoo — have gone dark until Congress agrees on how to fund the government, which provides money to operate the zoo.

The zoo tweeted Monday that “The cams . . . require federal resources, especially staff, to run.”

The zoo itself was closed to visitors as of Tuesday morning. Officials say the shutdown won’t affect care of the animals.

The panda cams have been popular since the August 23 birth of the cub, who won’t be on public view for a few months.

She had her second full veterinary exam last week. The cub weighed more than three pounds. The zoo’s vets reported that she was very squirmy during her exam.

So, until the cams return, enjoy this recent photo!

Wire and staff reports

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