SAN DIEGO (NBC/KNSD) - The newest panda at the San Diego Zoo makes his world debut Thursday, but the media has already gotten a sneak preview.
Xiao Liwu is 20 weeks old and weighs 16 pounds. He was born to 21-year-old Bai Yun.
Zoo officials say the cuddly -- but still clumsy -- youngster is a huge boost to international panda conservation efforts.
The San Diego Zoo boasts the most successful breeding program outside of China.
The program started 17 years ago, when Xiao Liwu's mother Bai Yun and a mate were loaned from china.
While Xiao Liwu, whose name means "little gift," has been declared strong enough to brave the cameras and crowds. Zoo officials are maintaining a watchful eye on him.
Like all U.S. pandas, the new 6-month-old panda is on loan from China and will likely return in a few years, where he will be part of a breeding program.