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Preliminary findings expected on cause panda cub's death at US National Zoo

FILE - In this Dec. 19, 2011 file photo shows Mei Xiang, the female giant panda at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington. The panda cub born to Mei Xiang on Sept. 16, 2012, after five consecutive pseudo pregnancies over the years, died Sept. 23, 2012. Panda keepers and volunteers heard a distress vocalization from Mei Xiang, at 9:17 a.m. and notified the veterinarian staff immediately, according to a statement by the National Zoo. Veterinarians immediately performed CPR and other life-saving measures but the cub did not respond. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh/File)
September 24, 2012 - 8:41 AM

WASHINGTON - Preliminary findings are expected on what killed a week-old giant panda cub at the National Zoo in Washington.

The unnamed cub was found dead Sunday. A necropsy was performed, and the zoo was set to present preliminary findings Monday.

Zoo officials said the cub showed no obvious signs of distress before making its final recorded noise Sunday morning. But the cub's mother, Mei Xiang, made an unusual honking sound that her keepers interpreted as a distress call.

When the cub was picked up, the animal was not breathing and its heart had stopped. A veterinarian attempted CPR, but the panda cub could not be revived.

News from © The Associated Press, 2012
The Associated Press

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