Panda bear information

Panda bear information

Panda bear information # 1
The staple food for wild giant pandas is bamboo, but their digestive system is actually more adapted to a carnivore diet. The giant panda can not easily break down the cellulose in bamboo, and a majority of the ingested food will therefore go to waste. The giant panda needs to eat between 12 and 38 kg of food each day, which means that it will spend most of its time eating. A wild giant panda will usually spend 10-16 hours a day foraging, while the rest of the time is spent on travels or resting and sleeping. The giant panda can include other things than bamboo leaves, stems and shoots in its diet, but wild pandas rarely let more than 1 percent of their diet consist of other plant species and meat. The giant panda can occasionally hunt small rodents like pikas. When kept in captivity and offered a wider range of foods, most giant pandas will happily gulp down rice gruel, sweet potatoes, apples, carrots, sugar canes and special panda biscuits with high fibre content.  

Panda bear information # 2
Roughly 50 percent of a bamboo plant consists of water, so the giant panda will receive plenty of fluid from its herbivore diet. Fresh bamboo shoots can actually contain up to 90 percent water. Despite this, the giant panda must regularly visit rivers and streams to drink more water. An adult giant panda will usually drink from a river or stream once a day or more. The rivers and streams in the mountainous panda habitats are replenished by melting snowfalls, and the forests will also receive 30-40 inches of precipitation a year. 

Panda bear information # 3
More scientific research is needed before we can safely determine the typical lifespan of a wild giant panda. According to Chinese reports, pandas kept in zoos have reached an age of 35 years. In 1999, a panda named Hsing-Hsing died at the National Zoo at an age of 28 years. Animals kept in high-quality zoos do however tend to grow much older than their wild relatives, and it is therefore reasonable to believe that wild pandas rarely grow as old as the zoo specimens.  

Panda bear information # 4
The wild panda bear populations are threatened by many different problems. Habitat loss occurs due to expanding agriculture, non-timber plantations and wood extractions. Infrastructure development and human settlement is also affecting the panda habitat, and hunting and gathering is also a problem. Trapping, snaring and netting of pandas do still occur, even though it is prohibited in China. Since the remaining wild pandas are spread over smaller, isolated patches of land, it can be hard for them to find suitable mates. China has today created more than 30 panda reserves that protect roughly 50 percent of the giant panda habitat.

Panda bear information # 5
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species used different categories. Extinct, Extinct in the wild, Critically endangered, Endangered, Vulnerable, Near threatened, Least concern, Data deficient and Not evaluated. According to the latest assessment of the wild population, the panda bear is listed as Endangered. This means that the species is facing a very high risk of extinction in the wild.

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