Pandas are amazing and very interesting creatures ! Unlike many other animals, the giant panda has lived in the forest for millions of years. They are highly specialized creatures that possess unique adaptations.
Here is our main information sure the pandas, which you probably did not know!
1) PANDAS HAVE AN ADDITIONAL FINGER ON THEIR LEGS
The pandas have 6 fingers on each leg ! The extra finger helps the panda tear the bamboo, they can peel a bamboo shoot in about 40 seconds. Their gut and throat are covered with a thick layer of mucus to protect them from splinters.
2) WERE PANDAS EVER WHITE EVERYWHERE?
According to a chinese legend, the panda was once an all-white bear. When a little girl tried to save a panda from a leopard attack, the leopard killed the little girl instead.
Pandas showed up at his funeral wearing armbands of black ash. By wiping their eyes, hugging and covering their ears, they smeared the black ashes on their bodies and this is how they got their black spots.
3) FEMALE PANDAS ARE FERTILE ONLY THREE DAYS A YEAR!
One of the reasons it is so difficult for pandas to reproduce is that females have very little time to become pregnant. The female ovulates once a year and has 2 to 3 days to fertilize this egg, otherwise she has to wait another year before she can try again!
Another reason why pandas are so difficult to breed is because they are very lazy bears. The mating process of a panda only takes two or three days. Once they have mated, the females chase the males from their territory and raise their young on their own.
4) THE LITTLE PANDA DOES NOT STAY LONG WITH THEIR MOTHER
When pandas are born, they are the size of a stick of butter. A little one has pink skin, a thin layer of white fur, a long tail and no teeth. At the end of the first month, the baby panda has all its spots.
A baby panda is almost two months before it is the size of an average human newborn. The cub stays with its mother for up to three years, until it is independent enough to venture out on its own, meaning a wild panda may only raise three or four cubs in a lifetime.
5) PANDAS EAT BAMBOO, BUT THEIR DIGESTIVE SYSTEM IS DESIGNED FOR MEAT!
Diet of a wild panda is 99% bamboo and 1% a mixture of grasses and occasional small rodents. Pandas only absorb 20-30% of the nutrients from bamboo. Other plant eaters, such as deer, take in about 80%.
This means that the panda has to eat most of the time when awake to get enough nutrients to survive. In zoos, pandas eat bamboo, sugar cane, rice porridge, a special high-fiber cookie, carrots, apples and sweet potatoes.
6) PANDAS GET MOST OF THEIR WATER FROM BAMBOO
Wild pandas get most of the water they need from bamboo and grasses (new bamboo shoots contain around 90% water). But pandas need more water than bamboo alone can provide.
Pandas therefore drink fresh water from the rivers and streams that are fed by the melting snow on top of the mountains.
7) PANDAS SPEND APPROXIMATELY ⅔ OF THEIR DAY EATING
There are about 20 different bamboo species that pandas will eat. However, bamboo does not contain enough nutrients, which means pandas have to consume up to 20 kg per day. For this reason, pandas spend about ⅔ of their day eating.
8) PANDAS HAVE EXTREMELY STRONG JAWS
A panda's face gets its shape from the massive muscles of its cheeks. In fact, a giant panda's jaw and cheek muscles are more powerful than you might expect.
Believe it or not, a panda could easily chew an aluminum dish into small pieces. It can also easily bite through a thick bamboo stalk. We have a hard time cutting the same stems with axes!
9) ADULT PANDAS DON'T HAVE MANY NATURAL ENEMIES
Thanks to their size, pandas don't have many natural enemies. However, animals such as snow leopards and jackals prey on vulnerable babies or elderly and sick adult pandas. The main enemies of pandas are the poachers who hunt them for their fur in order to sell it on the black market.
10) PANDAS CANNOT DO KUNG-FU 🙁
Unfortunately, pandas aren't exactly masters of kung fu, but they are very flexible. They like to fight and roll. They can even do somersaults.
Baby pandas are also very clumsy! They often stumble, fall and roll over as they explore their surroundings. They are therefore not very good at kung fu!
At Univers de Panda, we defend the idea that education is an essential lever for the conservation of a species. That's why we strive to educate young people and adultsby sharing our knowledge about the panda.
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