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Panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca)

description of the animal

Panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca)


The panda, also known as the giant panda, is a bear native to south central China. It is easily recognized by the large, distinctive black patches around its eyes, over the ears, and across its round body. The rest of the animal's coat is white. Despite its hulking size, pandas have a diet primarily consisting of bamboo. However, they will occasionally eat other available food.


Pandas are native to the mountain ranges in central China, mainly in Sichuan, but also in neighbouring Shaanxi and Gansu. Due to farming, deforestation, and other development, the panda has been driven out of the lowland areas where it once lived.


Pandas live in a few mountain ranges in central China, in Sichuan, Shaanxi, and Gansu provinces. They once lived in lowland areas, but farming, forest clearing, and other developments now confine them to the mountains.


Giant pandas are solitary. They have a highly developed sense of smell that males use to avoid each other and to find females for mating in the spring. After a five-month pregnancy, females give birth to a cub or two, though they cannot care for both twins.


A panda's daily diet consists almost entirely of the leaves, stems, and shoots of various bamboo species. Bamboo contains very little nutritional value, so pandas must eat 12-38kg every day to meet their energy needs. But they do occasionally eat other foods, such as honey, eggs, fish, yams, shrub leaves, oranges, and bananas when available.


Females give birth to one or two cubs every two years. At birth, the cub is helpless and only about the size of a stick of butter. The mother must cradle her tiny newborn in her giant paw until it grows larger.


The giant panda's future remains uncertain. This peaceful creature with a distinctive black and white coat is adored by the world and considered a national treasure in China. However, the panda faces several threats, including habitat loss and a very low birthrate, both in the wild and in captivity.

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