It is startling to think that there are only 1600 giant pandas alive today in the wild, but you can help by assisting the WWF in their efforts to increase and sustain the giant panda population in the wild.
You can adopt a panda for as little as £3 per month and you will receive a wonderful panda adoption pack containing the following items.
Panda adoption pack details
When you sponsor a panda, you’ll be helping this beautiful creature, its habitat and other animals that live in the same environment. You will also receive an adoption pack that includes:
- A cuddly toy panda bear
- A fact booklet about pandas
- A beautiful panda bear print
- A greeting card
- WWF’s tips on reducing everyone’s environmental impact
- Three issues of Insight magazine throughout the year with updates about giant pandas
Threats and challenges to the giant panda species
Man has contributed to the erosion of the panda’s natural habitat through the increase in agriculture and man’s appetite for fuel, food and wood which can be obtained from the natural habitat of the panda in China. The panda also shares its habitat with a variety of other species which are extremely valuable to hunters, who are looking for food or are supplying the booming medicinal trade in South-east Asia. Products such as meat, deer antlers and musk deer pods are sought by poachers who litter the mountainsides with wire snares, some of which accidentally trap the panda.
Poaching giant pandas carries a very severe penalty in China, however, due to the high financial rewards on offer for a panda skin for example, there are hunters that are willing to take the risk.
All of these largely man made problems provide huge challenges to the survival of the giant panda.
About giant pandas
Giant pandas have the digestive system of a carnivore, although due to environmental circumstances it has developed a largely bamboo based diet. However, as the panda’s digestive system was not designed to be able to cope with a bamboo diet, it is necessary for giant pandas to feed for 14 hours a day as their bodies are unable break down the cellulose in bamboo properly and there is also such a low nutritional value in bamboo.
A problem with a huge bamboo dietry requirement is the actual lifecycle of the bamboo plants themselves. Pandas eat such large volumes of the plants that once an area rich in bamboo has been depleated, the panda will need to move to a new habitat becasue it can take bamboo plants 20 years to regenerate enough to provide panda fodder. Therefore, it is incredibly importants that pandas are allowed connected habitats that they are able to mve between.
Where will my panda adoption donation money go?
AdoptAPanda.org.uk supports the WWF and all panda adoption funds will go to the WWF in their efforts to help pandas. WWF was the first international conservation organisation to work in China and have had panda conservation programmes running in China since the 1980′s which has led to the creation of over 60 protected panda nature reserves. Staff, who work in and around the protected areas, have been trained and equipped to protect the panda and its precious habitat. There has also been a lot of work with local communities to find ways for them to be less dependent on forest resources for their income, food, cooking and heating. Solutions include fuel-efficient stoves, alternative livelihoods such as bee-keeping, and improved farming methods.
Your support will also help fund other essential WWF conservation work
around the world.
Examples of WWF panda conservation work
- WWF worked with the Sichuan Forestry Department to develop scientific guidelines on giant panda habitat restoration to aid the local government’s forest recovery practices.
- Helped the Wolong Nature Reserve develop a post-earthquake management plan that will reduce the impact of reconstruction projects within the panda habitat as much as possible.
- WWF developed alternative livelihood projects to supplement income for the hardest-hit communities, and provided drinking water facilities and energy-saving stoves. This will reduce their reliance on the area’s natural resources, helping protect the panda habitat.
- WWF started work to restore a panda corridor linking the Minshan B panda population with the Minshan A group. The road that separates the pandas at the moment will be diverted through a tunnel, now under construction.