Panda - Chinese Culture Introduction

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Have you ever seen a panda, a cute animal, before? If you are in China, you'd better not miss this chance to say hello to a giant panda.

Pandas are called Xiong Mao in Chinese, meaning "bear-cat", because it looks like a bear in shape and a cat in face. It actually is a member of the bear family. It has black furs on ears, nose, eyes patches and shoulders and the rest is white. A panda is about sixty inches long from nose to rump and with a short tail of about six inches. A big one weighs more than two hundred to four hundred pounds.

Pandas eat bamboo only, so they have to live in certain places where large amount of bamboo can be found. But pandas in the zoos eat some other things like rice porridge, apples, sweet potatoes and carrots.

In recent years, bamboo flowers and then dies out, which happens once every one hundred years. Pandas will starve to death if they cannot find other bamboo forests before the one they live in dies. Today, there are only one thousand pandas in the wild and mostly in central China. It has been listed in the World Conversation Union's Red List of Threatened Animals, but it is still in danger. We need to do something more to help this rare and lovely animal.

In addition, the number of pandas decreases due to destroy to forests and hunting. Less wild panda bears can be found in forests. Now great efforts have been made to protect the lovely animal. Panda bases are built to protect and help panda breeding, such as the Wolong Natural Reserve in Sichuan. Though pandas mostly live in the mountainous areas in Sichuan, Shaanxi and Gansu provinces.