A giant panda is thought to have faked a pregnancy in order to receive nicer food and better accommodation.
Plans for the first ever video footage of a live panda birth have been dashed after Chinese experts suggested the 'mother' was faking it for more buns and air conditioning.
Giant panda Ai Hin had shown signs of pregnancy at the Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Research Centre, according to state news agency Xinhua.
A live broadcast of the birth had been planned after Ai Hin displayed reduced appetite and less mobility. But experts said she had experienced a phantom pregnancy, and her "behaviours and physiological indexes returned to normal".
But Wu Kongju, an expert at the Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Research Centre where Ai Hin is kept, explained that not all "fake" pregnancies among the animals are just down to hormonal changes.
"They also receive more buns, fruits and bamboo, so some clever pandas have used this to their advantage to improve their quality of life."
According to the Guardian, there only 1,600 pandas living in the wild in China, and another 300 in captivity.
Pandas have a very low reproductive rate, and are also at risk from other factors like habitat loss.
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