Giant Panda is one of those cutest animals, which everyone wants as a pet, but it has become one of the endangered species that governments across the globe are trying to protect. These are found mainly in China and depictions of giant panda can be found in Chinese art, which are very old. Giant Panda can be found mostly in the high mountain ranges of central China that receive ample rainfall and have thick vegetation.
Giant Panda Facts: Physical description
The size of a Giant panda is almost the size of an American black bear and the giant panda stands approximately two to three feet in height. They also belong to the family of bears in spite of all the speculations regarding the family it belongs to. Giant pandas are also seen in two colors black and white though it is yet unknown how they got the color but experts say that the black and white combination makes the pandas stand out in the forest as a result of which they find each other easily. The distribution of colors also follows a pattern in these pandas since the black is not random. The paws, ears, eye patches, legs, muzzle and shoulders have the black fur and the rest of the animal is covered with thick white fur. This thick fur gives warmth to the pandas since they prefer to live in cool, rainy forests. Pandas also have large teeth, which are flat, which facilitates their chewing of bamboo branches and leaves. The forepaws of these pandas have an extra thumb so that they can hold the bamboo shafts tightly.
Giant Panda Facts: Habitat and Eating Habits
Giant pandas are mainly terrestrial animals but they can also climb trees without any trouble. They primarily live in thick coniferous forests where there would be a sufficient number of bamboo trees since these animals live in Bamboo plants and eat bamboo plants. Bamboo leaves and stems are their staple diet though they have the digestive abilities like a carnivorous animal. They eat for fourteen hours a day and eat only bamboo and they eat approximately 38 kilograms of bamboo as the latter has very low nutritional value. So to gain more nutrition great pandas have to eat more of it.
Giant Panda Facts: Reproduction
A female panda reaches the age of maturity approximately by the age of 4 to 5 and male panda gains maturity at the age of 6 to 7. Both the sexes start breeding approximately within the age of eight and they are capable of reproducing till the age of twenty. Female pandas can reproduce only for seventy-two hours an year since they ovulate only once. The main way to attract a male towards them is their smell and the calls. Female pandas give birth to one or two babies at a time, which happens between the third and the fourth month. The Giant panda cubs when they are born are like small white rats and they weigh somewhere around 3.7 pounds whereas an adult Giant panda weighs around 175 to 280 pounds. For the first few days the mothers should not leave the cubs and go out of the den even for eating and drinking still there are very few cubs that survive. They live with their mothers till the age of three within which time they learn to walk, eat and also to live on their own after which they leave their mothers. A female Giant panda can only give birth to five to six babies at a time.
Giant Panda Facts: Social Structure and Communication
Most of the adult pandas are solitary creatures who do not roam in a group but they do communicate in the form of grunts, calls and the strongest form of communication is the scent that is unique for each of the Giant Pandas which helps them to locate where the other one is.
This 3000-year-old animal is very close to extinction as they are facing manifold problems like their habitat is being constantly destroyed to make room for the ever-increasing population of the world which is not only snatching away their shelters but also their food. Moreover reproductive rate of giant Pandas is very low, on top of which they are constantly being hunted down by butchers who lay traps for other animals.