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Thread: Pandas!

  1. #1
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    Pandas!

    I was trying to get on to the San Diego Zoo's pandacam, but it was overloaded

    Giant panda gives birth to fifth cub at the San Diego Zoo

    * Story Highlights
    * Giant panda Bai Yun gives birth to fifth cub at the San Diego Zoo
    * Bai Yun will care for the newborn by herself with zoo staff occasionally checking in
    * Weighing around 300 pounds, Bai Yun is about 1,000 times the size of the cub

    updated 7:57 a.m. EDT, Thu August 6, 2009

    (CNN) -- A giant panda at the San Diego Zoo gave birth to a cub the size of a stick of butter on Wednesday, her fifth cub born in the zoo since 1999.
    The public can view live video of the cub and its mother, Bai Yun, on the zoo's Web site.

    The public can view live video of the cub and its mother, Bai Yun, on the zoo's Web site.

    The sex of the mostly hairless, pink newborn, which was born around 5 a.m., is not known yet, said Dr. Ron Swaisgood of the zoo's Institute of Conservation Research.

    It will take about one month for the iconic black-and-white coloration of the giant panda to become visible, Swaisgood said.

    Its mother, Bai Yun, will care for the newborn by herself until she starts leaving the den regularly, at which time members of the zoo's giant panda team will step in briefly to check on the cub, he said.

    "She is a very experienced mother. She raised all of her other cubs until about 1.5 years, the natural age for separation," Swaisgood told CNN Radio. "She's a real pro."

    Weighing in around 300 pounds, Bai Yun is about 1,000 times the size of her cub, who weighs around 4 ounces., the typical size of a baby panda, Swaisgood said.

    "Pandas give birth to what's called very 'altricial' cubs. That means they are very small and fragile. This cub would probably weigh about 4 ounces. It would be pink and hairless and completely dependent on the mother," he said.

    The birth is considered a success for the zoo's Institute for Conservation Research, which works with research and breeding centers around the world to boost the endangered panda population

    Herself a model of that effort, Bai Yun was the first panda to be born and survive at the breeding center of the China Center for Research and Conservation of the Giant Panda in the Wolong Nature Reserve in 1991.

    She has given birth to four other cubs since arriving at the San Diego Zoo in 1996 from China. Two of them have since been returned to China, Swaisgood said.

    The newborn's father, Gao Gao, is a wild-born giant panda that arrived at the San Diego Zoo in 2003 from the Wolong Nature Reserve. He will not be involved in raising the cub.

    The cub will remain in the den with its mother for a few months and gradually start to come out as soon as it is able to walk, Swaisgood said.

    In four to five months, the cub will be ready for the public, Swaisgood said. Until then, the public can view live video of the cub and its mother on the zoo's Web site.

    "This highly endangered species still requires a lot of attention and assistance, but there is hope for the future," he said.
    Gene Ching
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  2. #2
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    hope the cub has better luck than my pekingese puppies... LOL... one was carried off by a hawk two years ago and the other one died because the mom stopped feeding it while we went away for the weekend.

  3. #3
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    ttt 4 2016!

    In honor of KFP3, here's a ttt.

    JANUARY 15, 2016
    Washington’s Panda Obsession
    BY ROBIN WRIGHT


    The National Zoo’s newest panda cub, Bei Bei.

    When I was little, I wanted a panda for my birthday. Last August 22nd, which happened to be my birthday, the National Zoo, in Washington, sent out an alert on e-mail, Twitter, and Facebook: its female panda, the gentle Mei Xiang, had gone into labor. I signed onto the zoo’s Panda Cam just in time to hear an eek-y squeal from the back stall where Mei had built her nest. It was the birth yelp of a baby boy. A four-ounce butter stick, pink-skinned and blind, slipped from his mom’s womb and slid across the floor.

    At a formal ceremony hosted by Michelle Obama, he was given the name Bei Bei (“Precious Treasure”). The former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright tweeted a selfie wearing a giant panda brooch. “Guess I’ll have to call it Bei Bei now,” she wrote.

    The panda prince finally makes his public début this week. He’s now eighteen roly-poly pounds of black-and-white fur. He recently found his legs, and waddles, unsteadily, around the panda house. His eyesight is still weak. He keeps trying to climb up walls painted with mountain scenes, which he can’t distinguish from the real rock formations in his den. But he’s a spunky little guy. Bei Bei alternates between tagging behind his mom and pawing persistently at her to play, even after she swats him away. He’s particularly enamored of his first toy, a red ball that he likes to wrap his body around.

    There’s something about pandas, the world’s rarest bear, that captivates the famous, turns the powerful into putty, and wins over skeptics. In 1956, Elvis Presley travelled with a huge stuffed panda on a twenty-seven-hour train ride from New York to Memphis. On the first leg, the bear was photographed in its own seat. At night, the photographer Albert Wertheimer later recounted, the bear was strapped into the upper berth in Elvis’ compartment, its legs protruding through the webbing, as Elvis listened to acetates of his recent recordings in the lower berth. The next day, Elvis, not yet a national icon, perched the bear on his hip and used it to flirt with girls as he strolled through a passenger car.

    Chris Packham, a British naturalist and the host of a BBC wildlife program, has led a campaign to let the species die out, because of existential challenges in breeding, food, and habitat. There are only about sixteen hundred pandas left in the wild, and some four hundred in zoos and breeding centers around the world. “Here’s a species that, of its own accord, has gone down an evolutionary cul-de-sac,” Packham said, in 2009. The world pours millions into keeping them alive, at the expense of other, more vital animals that would better insure global biodiversity, he argued. “I reckon we should pull the plug. Let them go with a degree of dignity.” But Packham conceded that the panda has disproportionate appeal. “It’s big,” he acknowledged. “And cute.”

    Washington, a city centered on crude, self-absorbed politics, melts over its panda bears. The first pair was gifted from China, in 1972, to mark the thaw in relations after President Nixon’s visit. They generated the zoo’s first panda groupies, some of whom are still active four decades later. Ling-Ling and Hsing-Hsing bore five cubs, but none survived. When Hsing-Hsing developed arthritis, a nearby Starbucks donated blueberry muffins, in which zoo vets hid his daily medicine. That became his favorite food. The capital of the world’s mightiest power went into serious mourning when the pair died, in the nineties. Local schools made sympathy cards to send to the zoo. The pandas’ pelts are still kept in a Smithsonian vault.

    By then, pandas had become the unofficial symbol of Washington. “It’s a power town, and pandas are a power species like no other,” Brandie Smith, the zoo’s associate director for Animal Care Sciences, told me. “They’ve become synonymous.” In 2000, Washington opted to rent another pair from China—initially at a million dollars a year, plus hundreds of thousands of dollars annually for joint research, and more for feeding, caring and staffing the pandas.

    The couple arrived with fanfare. They flew from China on a specially equipped FedEx plane called Panda One, with a large bear painted on the fuselage. Mei Xiang (“Beautiful Fragrance”) and Tian Tian (“More and More”) got a police escort—and live television coverage—as their motorcade made its way into town. I worked at the Washington Post when their first cub, Tai Shan, was born, five years later. Few would admit it, but Post reporters regularly checked Tai’s antics on the zoo’s early, grainy Panda Cams. (They’re high-def now.) His squeals often echoed in stereo across the newsroom.

    Bao Bao, a little girl, was born in 2013. Six weeks later, the government shut down because of a congressional budget dispute, and Bao Bao’s Panda Cam feed was turned off. The National Zoo, one of the few in the country without an entry fee, depends on government funding. The Internet feed was dark for sixteen days. “Our national nightmare is over,” NBC reported, when Republicans and Democrats finally reached a budget compromise. “The Panda Cam is back.” Within ten minutes, it was reaching its maximum capacity, of eight hundred and fifty viewers. The crisis led The Economist to conclude that pandas, despite their non-existent sex lives and self-destructive diets, are far more appealing than “costly, bumbling Washington politicians.”

    For all their charm, however, pandas are far from profitable. “They don’t make money,” Steven Monfort, the chief scientist at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, told me. “Every zoo that ever had pandas realizes they will not make their money back. Just building the infrastructure for pandas costs many millions of dollars, in addition to the cost of supporting, caring, and feeding them. The reason zoos do it is more intangible, including reputation and public draw. But those are worthless unless you can do something to help the species.”
    continued next post
    Gene Ching
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    continued from previous

    Bei Bei is Washington’s third surviving cub—his twin died within days of their birth–and he may be one of the last. Mei’s fertility cycle is near its end, Smith said. The zoo’s panda program exists partly to diversify the genetic stock of the endangered species. It participates in a kind of eharmony.com for pandas. In the late seventies, zoos began keeping stud books on their males, in order to expand the DNA pool, Monfort explained. Tian Tian, the zoo’s male panda, produces decent sperm, but he’s never figured out how to copulate. He doesn’t “align properly,” Monfort said. “It’s pretty frustrating to watch the poor guy try to mate.” Tian pushes Mei to the ground rather than raising her high enough to penetrate properly. As a result, all of their cubs have been produced by artificial insemination.

    For diversity, as its mama panda ages, the zoo turned to the global stud book to find another match. Mei was artificially inseminated twice last spring, with Tian’s sperm and the frozen sperm of a bear in China. “Fresh has better mobility, but sometimes you use both,” Monfort said. “You don’t want to waste a chance.” A female is fertile for only a couple of days a year. Tian’s sperm took—good for the public’s enjoyment of an endearing new member of the zoo’s panda family, but not as good for the long-term survival of the species, since he had already sired two cubs.

    Washingtonians are oblivious to genetics. With each cub, the zoo’s Panda Cams have grown more popular. More than five and a half million viewers have clicked on the cameras in the four months since Bei Bei’s birth—double the number after Bao Bao was born. People get in a kind of Internet waiting line to catch a glimpse, lasting only fifteen minutes before they’re automatically bumped off.

    Last week, I attended a zoo preview of Bei Bei and encountered some of the panda faithful. Merry and Allen Richon visit the pandas every morning before he heads off to work as a scientist at the National Institutes of Health. They regularly load their pictures on the zoo’s Facebook page. Why the commitment? I asked.

    “Pandas have a karma,” Allen said. “They’re raging Democrats. They’re environmentalists.”

    Karen Wille, a management consultant and another regular, has been to China—six times—to visit Tai Shan, the zoo’s first cub, born in 2005. All baby pandas go back to China after four years, for panda preservation. Wille pulled out a necklace pendant with Tai’s face on the front and his name, in Chinese characters, on the back. Her friend Christine Harper rolled up a sleeve to show me a row of panda bracelets, sales of which benefit panda research. Both are involved with Pandas International, a group based in Colorado that raises funds to buy medical equipment, computers, ultra sounds, and vaccines for China’s panda-research programs.

    Angela Wessel, a zoo volunteer for four decades, used to operate the Panda Cam, on the 4 A.M. to 7 A.M. shift, before heading to work at Hewlett-Packard. She showed me a scrapbook with pictures of her in a panda suit, part of the Zoo’s education program for kids. “You expect kids to grab you and hug,” she said. “But adults do, too—all the time.” She has also has been to China, five times, to visit Tai, who is a notorious ham. Another woman in line was decked out in panda scarves and a headband with panda ears. Among the groupies, she is known as the Voice of the Cubs. She tweets about pandas under the handle @houseofcubs, a play on “House of Cards.” She has more than sixteen hundred followers. No one knows her name, and she prefers it that way.

    I asked the zoo’s staff to explain the public fixation on pandas. “With lions and tigers, you’re simply a meal. All they’re interested in is eating you,” Brandie Smith told me. “Pandas are different. When you look in their faces, there’s an intelligence and dependence. You have the feeling, ‘I could be friends with this bear. If we hung out, we’d have a good time.’ ”

    There may be a scientific explanation, too, Smith added. “People talk about the power of awe. When you see something that brings awe, it produces oxytocin.” Oxytocin, sometimes known as the “love hormone,” influences emotion and social behavior. “It makes you feel more of a community person. It’s happiness and togetherness,” she said. “So when you have those moments of awe—and aww!—you are biochemically becoming a better person. That’s what pandas produce.”
    And given that it's DC, there's this...

    Here’s Why People in Panda Suits Are Following Chris Christie Around
    Zeke J Miller @ZekeJMiller Jan. 16, 2016


    They're 'pander bears'

    (AMES, Iowa) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is being tracked by a pair of “pander bears” in Iowa Saturday, who are passing out fliers highlight his shifting positions.

    It was not immediately clear who was responsible for sending the two people dressed in panda costumes to brave 15-degree temperatures outside a Christie town hall at a bar in Ames, Iowa. Their handout did not list a sponsor, and one of the pandas told TIME, “We’re doing it ourselves.”

    Phil Valenziano, the Christie campaign’s state director, walked out of the event to to challenge the protesters, asking who they were working for. When he discovered there was no “Paid for by” disclosure on their materials, he proclaimed for reporters, “That’s a violation!”

    The stunt follows in a long tradition of costumed trackers on the campaign trail, both real and fictional.
    Gene Ching
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  5. #5
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    Need a job?

    Cuz being a panda handler would be the best job ever.

    Panda base on the hunt for caretakers
    By China Daily and Xinhua (China Daily)
    Updated: 2014-05-12 07:19


    A panda rests on a tree at Bifengxia Base of the China Giant Panda Protection and Research Center in Ya'an, Sichuan province. Li Wei / Xinhua

    Being a panda caretaker could be the most enviable and fun-filled job in the country.

    Xinhua News Agency reported on Sunday that a caretaker at the China Giant Panda Protection and Research Center in Ya'an, Sichuan province, will earn 200,000 yuan ($32,000) a year, have the use of an SUV and receive free meals and accommodation.

    Recruitment for the position started on Saturday in Beijing and one of the organizers, club.sohu.com, called the job the "Chinese version of a caretaker of an island on the Great Barrier Reef".

    "Your work has only one mission: spending 365 days with the pandas and sharing in their joys and sorrows," organizers said.

    Applicants should be at least 22 years old and have some basic knowledge of pandas. They should also have good writing skills and the ability to take pictures, according to the recruiters' requirements.

    "Many people at our center do the same job, but the salary was never that high," said Heng Yi, a publicity official at the panda center. "But we want more people to pay attention to giant pandas' protection work and participate."

    The campaign will also recruit eight panda observers for a free three-day trip to the Bifengxia base.

    Volunteers at the center, who account for 80 percent of the base's staff, are mostly from Japan, Europe and the United States, Heng said.

    Ye Mingxin, a market manager for Ford Motor Co in China, a co-organizer of the recruitment campaign, said he does not think the job is easy.

    "You need perseverance for this job. We expect that the applicants will be mainly white-collar workers from big cities. They are used to eating whatever they want, but inside the giant panda base, the choices will not be plentiful," Ye said.

    People can apply for the job at fun.sohu.com. Recruiting drives will also be held in Shanghai, Chengdu and Guangzhou and will last until July 15.
    Gene Ching
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    I want that job...

    ...not that I'm into furries or anything.

    Zoo staff wear panda costumes to trick baby cub
    12:09pm, Feb 4, 2016 ABC

    The panda caretakers are responsible for the cub’s ‘back to nature’ training.


    The costumes aren't likely to trick zoo-goers. Photo: ABC/CNS

    A group of panda caretakers in China have dressed up like the animals to make back-to-nature training more authentic for three cubs.

    Staff members dressed up in panda costumes to undertake physical examinations on three giant panda cubs at Hetaoping field training base in Wolong, a major habitat for the animal in China’s Sichuan Province, local media reported.

    Three panda babies born in 2015, including Xinnier, who is pictured with the caretakers, took part in the training.

    The pandas are the sixth group to be put through the training since the program launched in 2005, the People’s Daily Online reports.

    The program was designed to introduce artificially bred giant pandas to the wild after two years of training and preparation.

    The three cubs are carefully selected from all cubs born in 2015 at the centre and will be gradually re-introduced to living in a natural environment.
    Gene Ching
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    Panda porn

    Warning NSFW. OK, just kidding....I think... depends where you work, I guess...

    Hundreds of thousands tune in to watch live broadcasts of pandas getting it on



    Panda pornaholics rejoice! It's that time of the year again, when two pandas are placed together in a confined space, as researchers poke and provoke, trying to get them to screw as the world watches on with bated breath.
    That's right. Our favorite Chinese channel iPanda is once again opening an entire page devoted to smut, featuring hours-long videos of pandas wandering around, along with a few minutes of hardcore action.



    This marks the second year that iPanda is attempting to demystify the complex process that is panda breeding, while also giving viewers a glimpse into the difficult job of panda research.
    Once again, it has proved a smashing success, state media reports that hundreds of thousands of people watched online as Wu Gang and Cui Cui got it on at the Bifengxia Panda Center.



    So if your curiosity has been piqued, then just click on over and lose yourself in hours of footage and all kinds of different positions. If you are having trouble following the dialogue, click here to familiarize yourself with some panda language basics.



    Panda breeding season lasts from March to May, so if you are unable to find any giant pandas to tickle your fancy, don't worry, there are a total of 27 pandas scheduled to mate this year.
    However, it's not guaranteed that all will do the deed. Last year, Wu Gang rebelled, refusing to become a panda porn star. Apparently, he has grown less modest in the last year, or perhaps he has finally found his soulmate.



    If that is somehow still not enough, you can check out our archives for all kinds of NSFW panda content. For instance, that glorious moment when we found out what a panda looks like while masturbating:



    Enjoy.



    [Images via CCTV / iPanda]
    Contact the author of this article or email tips@shanghaiist.com with further questions, comments or tips.
    By Alex Linder in News on Apr 5, 2016 11:58 PM
    Gene Ching
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    Born in China Official Trailer #1 (2017) - Disneynature Movie HD

    Gene Ching
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  9. #9
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    political pandas

    Chinese pandas cost a ton of money, not just to maintain, but the zoos must tithe back to China for them. But they make it back as pandas are huge zoo attractions.

    ‘Dead panda’ scare over animal gifted to Taiwan by China
    Monday May 16, 2016
    07:45 PM GMT+8


    Panda-mania swept Taiwan after Tuan Tuan and Yuan Yuan produced a cub Yuan Zai in 2014. — Reuters pic

    TAIPEI, May 16 — Taipei Zoo was forced to deny reports that a giant panda gifted by China as a symbol of unity had died today, in what initially appeared to be a frightening portent for cross-strait ties.

    Tuan Tuan was one of two pandas given to the island in 2008 in a move seen to endorse the presidency of Beijing-friendly leader Ma Ying-jeou.

    The animal’s name means “reunion” and was interpreted as a reflection of China’s ambition to reunite self-ruling Taiwan with the mainland.

    But as Ma prepares to step down and Taiwan ushers in new China-sceptic leader Tsai Ing-wen — intensely disliked by Beijing — reports circulated online that Tuan Tuan had died of distemper.

    News of the death in Chinese media, including huanqiu.com and People’s Daily, triggered laments on the mainland that Beijing’s propaganda machine had failed.

    “Tuan Tuan is dead. Propaganda is hopeless,” said one post on People’s Daily Twitter feed.

    Others welcomed the news, with one post on Taiwan’s Liberty Times website saying: “It’s good... we don’t have to spend so much money raising a Chinese panda.”

    As the story spread, Taipei Zoo insisted Tuan Tuan and his fellow pandas were very much alive.

    “All three pandas are in good health,” said zoo spokesman Eric Tsao.

    Huanqiu.com later issued a correction and apology to the zoo and Internet users.

    People’s Daily also posted a correction via Twitter saying it had been “misinformed”.

    Some in Taiwan slammed the false reports — others joked China would have gone to war with Taiwan if the panda had actually died.

    “Haha, in the future history will report that China attacked Taiwan because of a panda,” one message on the Apple Daily website said.

    Another speculated that pro-independence groups would have been blamed for the panda’s death.

    Although a fully fledged democracy, Taiwan has never formally declared a breakaway from China.

    Taiwanese pro-independence groups criticised the Ma government for accepting Tuan Tuan and Yuan Yuan in 2008, saying they were part of Beijing’s pro-reunification push.

    But political scepticism did not taint public acceptance and they became a star attraction.

    Panda-mania swept Taiwan again after the pair produced cub Yuan Zai in 2014, following a series of artificial insemination sessions. — AFP
    Gene Ching
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    Tuan Tuan lives!

    Giant panda reads newspapers to prove that he is still alive
    by Nancy Z on Tue, May 17, 2016



    Chinese news outlets have been reporting that the giant panda named Tuan Tuan, who lives in the Taipei Zoo in Taiwan, has passed away due to an illness, but the zoo insists that he is just fine. Here's how Tuan Tuan finally proved that he is still alive.

    The Taipei Zoo posted this photo with the caption: "Tuan Tuan says, 'What else is there to say?'"

    (Did they use Panda.Google translation? Haha!)



    Oh my, Tuan Tuan actually looks like a hostage in a cage, with newspapers dated May 16 scattered around him.

    Canine distemper is a deadly illness for the giant pandas. So when news came from China that Tuan Tuan had died of the illness, people paid attention. Fortunately, Tuan Tuan is just fine.

    Not only is Tuan Tuan alive and well, his mate Yuan Yuan and their cub Yuan Zai, born in 2013, are also fine, said the Taipei Zoo.



    This rumor has come at a sensitive time. Tuan Tuan and Yuan Yuan were named for "Tuan Yuan," meaning "Reunion," when they were given to Taiwan by China as a goodwill gift in 2008 to symbolize the hope for an eventual reunification between Taiwan and China. However, Ms. Tsai Ing-wen, the first female President of the Republic of China (Taiwan), is to be inaugurated on May 20, and she came from a political party that has been strongly against the reunion.

    Tuan Tuan's photo refuting his death must have worked, as Chinese media including Huanqiu.com and People's Daily have issued retractions.

    It's a great relief to know these beloved giant pandas are alive and well. No more rumors, ok?
    It's like the Jackie-Chan-Death-Hoaxes
    Gene Ching
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    Pandas no longer endangered

    YAY! I've been needing some good news.

    Good news and bad news for the animal kingdom
    By Emanuella Grinberg, CNN
    Updated 7:40 AM ET, Mon September 5, 2016

    The giant panda is no longer an endangered species
    The eastern gorilla is critically endangered

    (CNN)There's mixed news in the animal kingdom, as one beloved species celebrates increased numbers and another slips closer to extinction.

    These developments come from the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species, which assesses a species' conservation status.

    First, the good news:
    The giant panda is no longer an endangered species
    Thanks to an increase in available habitat, the population of the giant panda rose 17% from 2004 to 2014, leading the IUCN to downgrade it from endangered to vulnerable.
    A nationwide census in 2014 found 1,864 giant pandas in the wild in China, up from 1,596 in 2004, the IUCN said in its report on the animal.
    Revered in Chinese culture, the giant panda was once widespread throughout southern China.
    Since the 1970s, it has been the focus of one of the most intensive, high-profile campaigns to recover an endangered species, after a census by the Chinese government found around 2,459 pandas in the world -- proof of its precarious position, according to the World Wildlife Fund.


    Giant panda cub Nuan Nuan lives at the National Zoo in Kuala Lumpur.

    China banned trading panda skins in 1981, and the enactment of the 1988 Wildlife Protection Law banned poaching and conferred the highest protected status to the animal. The creation of a panda reserve system in 1992 increased available habitats; today, there are 67 reserves in the country that protect 67% of the population and nearly 1.4 million hectares of habitat.
    Meanwhile, partnerships between the Chinese government and international conservation nongovernmental organizations and zoos have spread research, conservation and breeding efforts. Zoo Atlanta announced Saturday that 19-year-old Lun Lun, originally from China's Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, had given birth to twins.
    The improved status confirms that the Chinese government's reforestation and forest protection efforts are working, the IUCN said. But climate change still threatens to eliminate more than 35% of the panda's bamboo habitat in the next 80 years; hence the "vulnerable" designation, which means it's still at risk of extinction.
    "The recovery of the panda shows that when science, political will and engagement of local communities come together, we can save wildlife and also improve biodiversity," said WWF Director General Marco Lambertini.

    Now, the bad news:
    The eastern gorilla is critically endangered
    Eastern gorillas populate the mountainous forests of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, northwest Rwanda and southwest Uganda, making them another victim of the region's civil wars.
    Hunting of eastern gorillas, fueled by the spread of firearms, has led to a population decline of more than 70% in the past 20 years for the world's largest living primate, the IUCN said.
    The eastern gorilla population, made up of two subspecies, is estimated to be fewer than 5,000, bumping it from endangered to critically endangered.
    One of those subspecies, Grauer's gorilla, lost 77% of its population since 1994, declining from 16,900 individuals to just 3,800 in 2015, the IUCN said. The second subspecies, the mountain gorilla, is faring better, increasing its number to around 880 individuals, reversing a decline that began in 1996.


    The mountain gorilla, seen here, is doing better than its counterpart, the Grauer's gorilla.

    The change in status means four of six great apes are critically endangered, the eastern gorilla, western gorilla, Bornean orangutan and Sumatran orangutan. The chimpanzee and bonobo are considered endangered.
    In the past 20 years, Grauer's gorillas have been severely affected by human activities, the victim of poaching for bushmeat for those working in mining camps and for commercial trade, the IUCN said.
    "This illegal hunting has been facilitated by a proliferation of firearms resulting from widespread insecurity in the region," said the IUCN in a report on the animal. "This rate of population loss is almost three times above that which qualifies a species as critically endangered."
    Additional threats include habitat loss and degradation through agricultural and pastoral activities in DRC, along with extraction of resources, which puts added stress on natural habitats.
    Illegal mining has decimated the lowlands of Kahuzi-Biega National Park, a Grauer's gorilla habitat. Destruction of forest for timber, charcoal production and agriculture continues to threaten isolated gorilla populations in North Kivu and the Itombwe Massif
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  12. #12
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    Deplorable

    Shocking images show a giant panda at a Chinese zoo foraging through RUBBISH left by tourists and eating it

    A visitor captured the images at Taiyuan Zoo in China's Shanxi province
    She shared the photos on social media where they've sparked outrage
    Zoo has apologised for the incident and said the enclosures were cleaned

    By QIN XIE FOR MAILONLINE
    PUBLISHED: 08:49 EST, 11 October 2016 | UPDATED: 17:51 EST, 11 October 2016

    Photographs of a giant panda foraging through rubbish and apparently eating it at a zoo in China has sparked outrage.
    The images, captured by a visitor to Taiyuan Zoo in Shanxi province, showed the bear rooting through assorted junk in its enclosure, including a water bottle, food debris and a balloon.
    After the pictures appeared on Chinese social media thousands of people commented on the incident, calling for the zoo to lose its rights to house China's national treasure.


    Photographs of a giant panda foraging through rubbish (pictured) and apparently eating it at a Chinese zoo has sparked outrage



    The animal was seen rooting through various items, including food debris (left) and a water bottle (right)

    The photographs were taken by user 'ai gun gun o' and posted to Weibo on October 5.
    In a caption that accompanied the images, she wrote: 'Taiyuan Zoo doesn't deserve to have giant panda! I don't know whether it's Gong Wan or Shun Shun that's eating the rubbish left behind by tourists!
    'The outside enclosure is like this. More importantly, there's no one to do anything about it!
    'Can't find breeders! Can't find managers. This makes me so angry!'


    Many Chinese web users were outraged by the condition of the enclosure (pictured)

    Since the story emerged on Weibo, thousands of people have commented on the incident, outraged by both the tourists and staff at the zoo.
    Some even said the zoo should not be able to house giant pandas.
    'Chen Lang 1968' commented: 'Taiyuan Zoo needs to be stripped of their rights to have giant pandas.'
    Taiyuan Zoo was quick to respond to the incident.
    In an official statement distributed via Weibo, the attraction confirmed the incident.
    The statement said that it took place during the national holiday period and that the park had been very busy.



    The zoo has since released a statement apologising for the incident. They also released images showing the enclosure being sanitised

    A number of visitors were said to have ignored warnings and decided to feed the pandas, which resulted in the rubbish seen in the enclosure.
    The zoo was keen to stress that as the photographs were taken, one of the pandas, Gong Gong, had already been moved to an indoor enclosure.
    Staff were already preparing to rehouse Shun Shun as well, which was why they were unavailable.
    The zoo apologised for the incident and said that staff had since tidied and sanitised the enclosures.
    The pandas underwent a health check and were given the all clear.
    MailOnline Travel has contacted Taiyuan Zoo for additional comment.

    CHINA'S PRECIOUS ANIMAL AMBASSADOR: THE FACTS YOU DIDN'T KNOW ABOUT GIANT PANDAS
    Pandas are often considered national treasures in China.
    There is an estimated 1,600 giant pandas in the wild. There are also around 300 in zoos and breeding centres around the world.
    It's unknown how long Giant Pandas live in the wild. However, Chinese media have reported pandas living in zoos up to the age of 35.
    A wild panda's diet is 99 per cent bamboo while the remaining one per cent is usually small rodents.
    Giant pandas need to consume around 20 to 40 pounds of bamboo each day to get the nutrients they need.
    On all four legs, giant pandas stand at around three to four feet tall.
    The cubs do not open their eyes until they are six to eight weeks of age and are not mobile until three months.
    Until recently, the animal had been listed as an endangered species.
    Source: Smithsonian National Zoological Park and MailOnline
    Never been to a Chinese zoo. I don't think I could take it. I've been to zoos outside the U.S. where conditions were horrible and felt really bad about paying the entrance fees after.
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  13. #13
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    Panda FTW

    There's vid behind the link.

    Panda wrestles man who sneaked into enclosure in China
    The visitor had apparently jumped in to show off in front of his female friends - but ended up in a tangle with the 120kg bear.
    05:19, UK,
    Monday 31 October 2016

    Man wrestles panda

    A giant panda grabbed a man's leg and pulled him to the ground after he sneaked into the animal's enclosure in China.

    The unnamed visitor was captured on camera walking up to the sleeping adult male called Mei Ling.

    He had apparently jumped in to show off in front of his female friends at the zoo in Nanchang City, Jiangxi Province.

    As the man stood over the 120kg (19 stone) panda, 12-year-old Mei Ling woke and ran towards him, immediately grabbing his right leg.


    The visitor was eventually able to flee the scene

    The move has apparently been used in the past when pandas are playing with their keepers.

    However, the man got himself into a sticky situation when he was wrestled onto the grass.

    His attempts to stroke the panda's back to get him to let go proved unsuccessful.

    He was eventually able to free his leg and run away by turning his body in a wrestling-style move so that he was on top of the panda.

    Kuang Huaming, from Nanchang Zoo, said: "The young man left the zoo right after he escaped, and we could not get in touch with him.

    "According to witnesses, his trousers were torn a little by the panda, but the man should be OK.

    "We also arranged medical checks for the panda and told the breeders to closely observe its condition. So far the panda is fine."
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  14. #14
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    2016 claims one more

    RIP Pan Pan

    WARNING: NSFW - Panda Sex

    How 'hero father' panda Pan Pan helped to save his species
    By Serenitie Wang and Ben Westcott, CNN
    Updated 3:28 AM ET, Fri December 30, 2016

    Story highlights
    Pan Pan helped father about 25% of the world's captive panda population
    He was the oldest living male panda when he died at the age of 31

    (CNN)You may never have heard of him, but without this bear you might never have seen a panda in your local zoo.

    Pan Pan, the oldest male panda in the world, died early in the morning on Wednesday in China's Sichuan province.
    During his life, Pan Pan fathered more than 130 children and grandchildren, according to Chinese state media, making 25% of all pandas in captivity his descendents.
    Keepers fondly remembered his "energy and vitality" in the 1990s, during which he fathered the first ever panda cub to survive in a captive breeding environment.

    iPanda added 3 new photos.
    December 28 at 1:28am ·
    RIP--legendary panda Pan Pan passed away
    Giant panda Pan Pan passed away at the age of 31 for tumor at 4:50 am Beijing time on Dec 28th ,in Dujiangyan Research Center.
    He is a legendary father of over 130 pandas, a quarter of all the captive pandas of the world. We will miss you, Pan Pan and RIP. #PandaNews


    His family is now living in zoos across the world, from California in the United States to Chiang Mai in Thailand and even all the way in Edinburgh, Scotland.
    Pan Pan was 31 years old when he died, the panda equivalent of over 100 human years.
    Pan Pan 'strong and virile'
    Pandas are famously difficult to breed in captivity -- a female is fertile for no more than three days a year and a pregnancy can last up to 200 days.
    But Pan Pan helped launch a breakthrough in China panda breeding.
    Speaking to CNN, a spokesman for the Panda Conservation and Research Center in Sichuan, China said Pan Pan had been found in the wild, making him "wilder" than other pandas.
    "He had a strong physique. Pan Pan was really fast and agile when he was young," he said.


    Pan Pan mating with a female during his youth in 1999. He helped father 25% of all pandas in captivity worldwide.

    In a post on their official Weibo in November, the China Panda Protection and Research Center said the whole panda research center had been having trouble with panda breeding when Pan Pan arrived.
    "Pan Pan brought hope to the center. In a group of sluggish, feeble pandas, Pan Pan stood out. He was always full of energy and vitality."
    The Center said Pan Pan had been in "full blossom" in the late 1990s, before eventually withdrawing from breeding due to his age.
    Giant panda gives birth to twins

    Giant panda gives birth to twins 00:49
    "I heard old employees talk about Pan Pan -- how strong and virile he was. In the mating season, he was particularly excited and rugged, covered with hormones from top to bottom," the post said.
    "He easily dominated the population."
    In September 2016, it was announced giant pandas were no longer officially endangered as numbers increased.
    Center honors 'hero father'
    The center's official Weibo account announced Pan Pan's death on Wednesday, describing the panda as a "hero father" of many.
    "Pan Pan's health rapidly deteriorated. He lost his ability to move and hunt. The medical staff tried to rescue him but had no luck," the statement said.
    "(Hopefully) he doesn't suffer from pain in heaven. May "Grand Pan" rest in peace."
    China Conservation and Research Center for Giant Pandas keeper Tan Chengbin told Xinhua Pan Pan had been living with cancer and his health had "deteriorated" in the past three days.
    His death comes less than two months after the world's oldest panda, a female named Jia Jia, passed away in Hong Kong at the age of 38.
    Currently the oldest living panda is Basi, a female bear in Fujian who is 36 at present.

    Christy Chen contributed to this report for CNN.
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  15. #15
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    Today is National Panda Day!

    Celebrate National Panda Day With Clips From Disney's 'Born In China'

    By: LATF Staff | March 16, 2017, 9:12 a.m.
    Filed in: FYI



    We're celebrating National Panda Day (March 16th) with new clips from Disney's BORN IN CHINA... hits theaters April 21st!
    continued next post
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
    Support our forum by getting your gear at MartialArtSmart

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