Red pandas are native to the mountains and forests from northern Myanmar to western Nepal.
They feed almost exclusively on bamboo shoots, but may also eat eggs, birds and insects.
Red pandas are nocturnal and usually solitary. They sleep during the day high up in the tree canopy, wrapping their long, bushy tail around them to keep warm.
After a gestation period of around 4 months, 1 to 5 cubs are born. In preparation for the birth, the female constructs a nest inside a tree hollow. After a week, a female will spend more time out of the nest, coming back every few hours to groom and nurse the young. The young stay in the nest for about 90 days, and are weaned at around 6-8 months old.
Red pandas are rare in the wild and their numbers are continuing to decline. Reasons for this decline in numbers include poaching for fur and pet trades, competition from domestic livestock loss and fragmentation of habitat through deforestation.
Newquay Zoo's red pandas, Zou and Germaine, are part of the European Endangered Species breeding programme (EEP) for the species.
- Latin Name: Ailurus fulgens
- Class: Mammals
- Order: Carnivora
- Conservation Status: Endangered
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