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France’s first Giant Panda cub is growing up fast and revealing his daring personality at ZooParc de Beauval. Now five months old, little Yuan Meng was born to mother Huan Huan and father Yuan Zi and has captured the hearts of fans around the world.

26060438_1849755118382759_7518380596883559367_oPhoto Credit: ZooParc de Beauval

After learning to walk back in November, Yuan Meng has begun discovering his surroundings. He is fearless, crossing obstacles without hesitation and climbing on everything in sight, including his mother. 

The care team completely renovated the indoor Panda habitat to create a safe and interesting environment for Yuan Meng. They built a low wooden climbing structure and added rocks for the cub to play on.

Yuan Meng has a unique appearance, with grayish, fuzzy fur (most baby Pandas have brighter white, smooth fur). The care team explains that Yuan Meng’s father, Yuan Zi, had the same appearance when he was a cub.

Yuan Meng spends most of his time with his mother and still nurses. But he has also started nibbling on bamboo, which will soon become is main diet.  

For the first four months of his life, the little Panda was nicknamed Mini Yuan Zi after his father. On December 4, Mini Yuan Zi was named Yuan Meng at a ceremony attended by Chinese and French government officials. His new name means “the realization of a dream or a wish” in Chinese. The little Panda even got to meet Emmanuel Macron, the President of France. Mr. Macron’s wife, Brigitte, is Yuan Meng’s godmother.

So far, Yuan Meng has remained mostly behind the scenes at ZooParc de Beauval. But on January 13, he will move into the indoor Panda exhibit where he can be seen daily by his adoring fans.