Six pairs of giant panda twins have been revealed to the world in China. The cubs were all born in the Sichuan province within the last four months in the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding (CRBGPB).

Hou Rong, director of research at the CRBGPB, said they did not expect so many twin panda births this year. She said: "The key for panda cubs to survive is to feed them colostrum.

"Newly-born pandas are not immune to the outside world, so they are easily infected with bacteria and end up dying. However, they can survive if they have colostrum, as it is rich in antibodies."

Activities to promote the panda cubs took place in Chengdu City on 24 October, with people getting the chance to act as panda keeper, attend lectures about the species and even name some of the cubs.

Twin pandas have accounted for 90% of all panda births in China this year, which compares with an average of 50% in previous years.