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Creatures Of Intrigue- DIE!!!(might)

Giant Panda

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Panthera pardus
Ailuropoda melanoleuca
Dermochelys coriacea
Gymnogyps californianus
Ursus maritimus

It's baby-like cuteness shouldn't fool you! It can be as dangerous as any other bear!

Try out this Panda puzzle!

Panda skeleton

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First Off: General Facts

* Family Ursidae- the bear family
* Native to central-western and southwestern China
* distributed in a few mountain ranges- central China, Sichuan, Shaanxi, and Gansu provinces
* Once lived in lowland areas
* Farming, forest clearing, and other development now restrict giant pandas to the mountains* Live in broadleaf and coniferous forests with dense understory of bamboo, elevations between 5,000-10,000 feet
* Diet consists of 99% bamboo
* Eats bamboo almost 12 hours a day
* Sleeps for the rest of the day
* oddly belongs to order Carnivora
* If available eats honey, eggs, fish, yams, shrub leaves, oranges, and bananas
* Thick wooly coat keeps it warm in its cool forest
* Large molar teeth and strong jaws for crushing bamboo
* Highly endangered
* China has 239 giant pandas in captivity and 27 living outside the country
* Estimated 1,590 pandas living in the wild
* Adults measure around 1.5 m long and around 75 cm tall, shoulder length
* Males 10-20% larger than females
* Males weigh up to 115 kg(253 lbs.)
* Females occasionally weigh up to 100kg(220 lbs.)
* Adults generally solitary
* Communicate through periodically through scent marks, calls, and occasional meetings
* Has a paw with a "thumb" and five fingers
* Their "thumb" is a modified sesamoid bone for easier bamboo holding
* 2nd largest tail in bear family, 4-6 in.
* Live up to 20-30 yrs. in captivity
* Cub is about 150 g and the size of a stick of butter
* Listed as endangered in the World Conservation Union's (IUCN's) Red List of Threatened Animals



An adult eating bamboo

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Panda Poaching(oh no!)

Pandas have been targets for poachers since ancient times. And by foreigners since they were introduced to the West, but were unable to hunt them in the 1930's caused by the Second Sino-Japanese War and the Chinese Civil War.

But for the locals pandas provided them with soft furs. This also lead illegal poaching for the black market after the Chinese economic reform. During this time panda skins were in high demand.

There were a number of cases of poaching in the 1980's and 1990's but this has declined due to strict laws of conserving pandas. However people hunting for other animals in the panda habitat also pose a threat. Traps set for deers or other bears accidentally kill Giant Pandas.

Before revising the Criminal Law of China in 1997, a person proven guilty for killing a Giant Panda could receive the death penalty, and some panda poachers were in fact executed. The most severe punishment a person can get from panda murder today is over 10 years in prison.

A newborn Giant Panda cub

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Awwww

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A cub playing...still awwww-worthy

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A much difficult panda puzzle

Hey kids! It's shooting panda!

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DID YOU KNOW?!? The legend of the panda states that pandas were all white back then. One panda would join a flock of sheep guarded by a young female shepard. When the girl died of a leopard attack. All the pandas heard and in grief covered their arms in ashes. Their eyes are stained from crying, ears from covering them because of each other's loud cries and their backs from hugging each other.