BEAUVAL, France – France's first baby panda has a name at last, bestowed by Chinese dignitaries and French first lady Brigitte Macron.
The 4-month-old male cub is called Yuan Meng, which means "the realization of a wish" or "accomplishment of a dream."
Monday's naming ceremony at the Beauval Zoo south of Paris was an important diplomatic moment, involving Chinese officials who flew in from Beijing for the event. The cub's parents are on loan to Beauval from China, and the cub will be sent to a Chinese panda reserve when it is weaned.
Tradition holds that panda cubs born in captivity are named by China. Brigitte Macron — considered the panda's "godmother" — officially announced the name.
There are only about 1,800 pandas in the wild in China and about 400 in captivity worldwide.