Panda Bear Facts and Information

Basic Information about Giant Pandas

Have you seen the movie Kung Fu Panda? Kung Fu Panda has been very popular to children since it was released in 2008 and the film was inspired from the ancient China setting. Even Google had used the name Panda, Google Panda, a change in Google’s search ranking algorithm.

 

Here are some basic panda facts and information.
What is a giant panda?

Ailuropoda melanoleuca or commonly called Giant Panda looks like a bear because of its black and white fur in the ears, limbs, eye patches, and shoulders.[1] A giant panda is about 2-3 feet tall at the shoulder. A wild male panda is generally weighing up to 250 pounds while a female panda can only weigh up to 200 pounds. They are elusive and solitary that they spend most of the time on eating grass.
Panda Origins

Giant Pandas originate in China. They were once lived in the lowland areas but because of farming and deforestation, they have moved to the mountains of Sichuan, Shaanxi, and Gansu provinces where abundance of bamboo could be seen.[2] They love the cool and wet environment that the forest produced. Only their wooly coat are used to keep them warm inside the forest.
Life Span

It is uncertain how long giant pandas can live in a dense wild forest. However, based on the research made by Chinese scientists and some other reliable information about pandas, pandas in zoos tend to have a longer lifespan than the wild ones. A record was found that giant pandas living in zoo have reached 35 years but 20 years in the wild.[1]

 

Where does a giant panda live?

Wild giant pandas love cool and wet habitat. They are usually found in the high bamboo forest in the mountains of central China with about 8,500 to 11,000 feet elevation. They do not do hibernation like the bears do. Instead, they moved into another place to make themselves comfortable in times of cold and summer. [3]
What do giant pandas eat?

Pandas are mainly feed with bamboo. A panda information report stated that these gorgeous creatures can consume about 9-20 kgs of bamboo leaves, stems, and shoots everyday as their main source of energy [4]and water. Occasionally, they eat rodents, birds, honey, flowers, and vines. 99% of their daily menu is made up of bamboo and the 1% is from other sources. This is one of the reasons giant pandas love living in areas that are plenty of bamboo.
Behaviour

During summer, wild pandas are feed on elevated slopes. They are able to climb about thirteen thousand feet or approximately 3,962 meters.[5]

Pandas are expert climbers and swimmers. They are peaceful animals and they often don’t like confrontation. They usually escape whenever their predators such as jackals and leopards attack them and their cubs and climbing and swimming are their vital skills to defend themselves.[6]

It takes about 4-8 years for giant pandas to reach their adulthood. A female panda can only give birth up to 2 cubs with one year intervals. However, they are unable to care for both. As a result, only one survives. A typical panda cub weighs about 4-8 oz and come in 6 inches in length.[7]They are typically blind, hairless and pink and was known to be the smallest newborn in the mammalian family and stays on their mother’s side for up to three years before they stand on their own.

Pandas has relatively a a very low rate in reproduction to recover from devastations made by mankind . Their way of communications are calls, scents and occasional meetings. This is the reason why giant pandas are enjoying government protection in China and are considered as one of the most endangered species in the world. In a 2013 report, there are 128 giant pandas dwelling at China’s Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Research Base with 33% of them were born during captivity.[8]

 

REFERENCES:

[1] http://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/giantpandas/pandafacts/
[2]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giant_panda
[3]http://www.defenders.org/panda/basic-facts
[4]http://www.defenders.org/panda/basic-facts
[5]http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/giant-panda/
[6]http://nationalzoo.si.edu/Animals/GiantPandas/PandaFacts/babydevelopment.cfm
[7]http://wwf.panda.org/what_we_do/endangered_species/giant_panda/panda/what_do_pandas_they_eat/
[8]http://www.skynews.com.au/offbeat/article.aspx?id=923424

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