By EMILY ALLEN
After six months pandas can eat bamboo but for the first six months they rely on their mother's milk
Leaving home - and your mum - for the first time can be a daunting prospect even if you're a panda cub.
But luckily for this bunch they had their brothers and sisters to keep them company.
All 12 of the baby giant panda siblings are adjusting to living together in a group after leaving their mother at the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, in southwest China's Sichuan Province.
The infant pandas have attracted a large number of visitors and, when let out into their enclosure this week, began to show their playful side.
While one amused spectators on Tuesday with its attempts to climb rocks, two others competed to secure their territory.
Others enjoyed munching away at their staple food, bamboo.
Going it alone: All 12 of the baby giant panda siblings are adjusting to living together in a group after leaving their mother
But one little panda preferred to shy away from the applause of excited on-lookers.
A total of 21 giant pandas were successfully bred in China in 2011, bringing the number of captive giant pandas bred in the country to 333.
Giant pandas can live up to 30 years in captivity, but usually only 15 to 20 years in the wild.
When they are born they weigh just 100g or 4 ounces, are blind and helpless, relying on their mother who cradles them in her paws and doesn't leave the den for several days after giving birth.
A baby giant panda bound across the grass in excitement. The infant pandas have attracted a large number of visitors
Two pandas munched on some bamboo in front of amused spectators while two others competed to secure their territory
After a while the cubs grow soft grey fur which then develops into black and white pattern within a month.
At six months they can chew on bamboo but prior to that it's their mother's milk which keeps them alive.
When they are one-year-old giant pandas weigh around 100lb.
A total of 21 giant pandas were successfully bred in China in 2011, bringing the number of captive giant pandas bred in the country to 333
Thursday, January 5, 2012
By EMILY ALLEN