panda mei xiangWatching zoo animals on live web cams has become an adorable trend. Remember the sweet twin polar bears who made headlines for wrestling and generally just hanging out looking insanely cute? Yep, zoos have known for a while how to hook us with baby animal eye candy. Now, they've figured out a new way to fascinate us using technology: Live-tweeting!

The National Zoo in Washington decided to live-tweet their attempt to breed its giant pandas this week via their Twitter account @NationalZoo. Since the pair has failed to get it on naturally, Mei Xiang, the female giant panda, was artificially inseminated both Sunday and Monday. Although there's only a less than 10 percent chance that she'll get pregnant, the Zoo maintained a positive outlook through its fun fact-filled tweets. One example: "They use .25 mL straws of sperm. That’s a total of 1.5 mL of sperm, or up to 800 million motile sperm in the sample! #pandaAI" Yow!

The rest of the tweets followed suit with the hashtag "#pandaAI." And no small details or even small cheers for Mei were spared. Take this one:

This is a big moment for us! If what happened in the last few minutes takes, we could have a panda cub here this summer! #pandaAI

Cute!!! But also kind of unconventional, right? After all, it isn't every day that you can follow along with an artificial insemination or impregnation via Twitter. That's exactly what the zoo must have been thinking when they decided to live-tweet the process. Usually, live-tweeting any major event -- from the Oscars to a wedding -- is a waste of time. I tend to feel like we should all be engaging in the moment, as opposed to tweeting about it. On the contrary, this was a pretty damn smart use of the technology! After all, what better way for a zoo to engage with its followers via Twitter? (Other than to document the escape of a cobra, that is ...) 

Here's hoping one of those 800 million sperm take and the zoo gets their baby panda! Judging from this tweet session, that cub's already a reality star in the making.

Here's a video on the #pandaAI:

 

How fascinating is this?!

 

Image via tv.ibtimes.com