Pandas are really iconic creatures! Associated with China, bamboo and the World Wildlife Fund, these slow-moving, black-and-white beasts are also perhaps some of the most misunderstood. Think you know a lot about these great bears? Here are a few interesting facts about Pandas that might just surprise you.
- The panda’s name is actually shortened from Giant Panda – it’s likely just easier to say!
- Pandas thrive on bamboo. They actually live in China‘s thick bamboo forests, up towards the mountains. However, they can also be found in other cool, wet areas of land.
- They can even climb trees, particularly thanks to their retractable claws. They can learn to do this from a young age, around seven months old!
- Pandas have pupils that are more in line with cats than their fellow bears! That’s because they are slits, not circles.
- Pandas thrive on at least two different types of bamboo. Without this variation, they are at risk of starvation in the wild.
- In fact, bamboo makes up all but 1% of their daily diet. They are famously picky eaters!
- This diet can also mean that they have extraordinarily regular toilet habits. A panda is known to pass faeces around 40 times each day!
- But what about the 1%? Pandas, believe it or not, are still considered omnivores. They are known to eat smaller animals and bird eggs. However, they also love farm vegetables!
- Bamboo, bamboo, bamboo – a panda is likely to spend around half its life finding and eating it!
- There are only around 2,000 pandas left in the wild. They are some of the most actively-conserved animals on the planet, and hence the fitting symbol for the WWF.
- However, another reason why a panda was chosen to represent the organisation is due to printing restrictions! It simply would cost too much to press a more colourful creature.
- Believe it or not, despite their mainly forest and mainland habitat, pandas are fantastic swimmers.
- Pandas are infamously difficult to mate. That’s because female pandas are only ever fertile three days a year – and that’s at maximum.
- A panda will have unlimited access to their mother for the first month of their life. They will normally be carried about and covered during this time!
- Pandas are actually born pink, and will grow their black and white fur after a few weeks. However, not all are black and white – some are brown with white, too!
- Pandas are rare bears in that they don’t hibernate. This is largely thanks to their diet. However, they still make sure to look for warmer climates as the winter starts rolling in. Don’t we all?
- The panda might stand out in some environments, but their whiteness helps in snowy weather, and their black patches help in deep shade and covering.
- Pandas are older than you might think! In fact, they’ve been around for as long as we have, roughly. Pandas are thought to date all the way back 2 million years ago!
Do you know any interesting or fun facts about the Giant Panda you’d like to share here? Let us know in the comments section below!
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