Leela and Thomas Became Parents

Red Pandas Newborns
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Mom Leela (5), and dad Thomas (6) became parents for the first time (for Leela). The cubs are healthy, and Leela seems to be managing her new role just fine. She is regularly nursing and grooming two little fur balls, according to zookeepers.

The cubs weighed less than a third of a pound at birth. The female had 124 grams, while the male had 119 grams.

Tyler Boyd, OKC Zoo Curator of Carnivores and Hoofstock said that the zoo couldn’t be happier to welcome these two adorable red pandas to the world, especially since they represent an endangered species. He also added that Leela took a severe part as a nurturing mom.


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The OKC Zoo is pleased to announce the arrival of two healthy red panda cubs, one male and one female! The cubs were born late in the evening on Sunday, June 2, at the Zoo’s red panda habitat in Sanctuary Asia to mom, Leela, 5, and father, Thomas, 6. Caretakers report that first-time mother Leela is demonstrating appropriate maternal behaviors such as a grooming and nursing her offspring and all are in good health. At birth, the male weighed 119 grams and the female 124 grams (less than a third of a pound). By June 18, both cubs had more than doubled their birth weights to 252 grams (male) and 257 grams (female). The carnivore caretaker team at the Zoo compiled name options for the cubs that are representative of their natural habitat in central Asia. An online vote will determine the duo’s names. Voting is open until Friday, July 5 and the winning names will be revealed on the Zoo’s Facebook page Monday, July 8. Cast your vote at okczoo.org/redpandacubs! The cubs are not yet on public view, but stay tuned on social media for more updates!

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Even though the zoo officials don’t have the information about the time the cubs will be on public display, the twins and their mom are bonding and doing well behind-the-scenes at their habitat.

Here is the big news — neither cub has a name. Therefore, the zoo is asking you for help!

In a nutshell, the team which takes care of the red panda family picked out some names. These represent their home in Asia, but since there are several—and there can only be one—you have the chance to vote for the winning one.

Go to okczoo.org/redpandacubs and make your choice. You can do so until July 5.

The choices for the little male are Tau (handsome in Nepalese), Jetsun (Buddhist in Tibetan) or Ravi (Sun in Nepalese). As for the little female, there are also three options, Khyana (it means light), Mohu (cloudy in Nepalese), or Nima (Nepalese for small).

On July 8, the winning names will be posted on the zoo’s official Facebook page.

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