Who loves Giant Pandas? The answer to that question should be: Everybody! We all know and love Giant Pandas, and they’re also instantly recognisable as being the logo for the WWF (World Wildlife Fund, not the wrestling company). We’ve seen the hilarious and insanely cute internet videos and memes of these majestic yet mysterious creatures, but do we know all there is to know about them? Probably not. That’s why, today, we are going to be looking at some interesting and unusual facts about Giant Pandas, so you can get a feel for what these creatures are all about and why we work so hard to bring them back from the brink of extinction. Here at Panda Shock, we are not just sell panda costumes.panda hoodies or panda backpacks.we have Giant Pandas living virtually on our doorsteps. We live just a few miles from where these amazing creatures still live in the wild, and we are crazy about them. That’s why we’re compiling this list of Giant Panda facts today, so that we can help you to learn more about these fantastic animals. So, sit back, get yourself nice and comfortable and let’s look at some interesting and unusual facts about giant pandas.
Pandas hug for reassurance and safety – If you’ve seen the insanely cute video of a baby panda in a zoo hugging the leg of a zoo keeper as he attempts to clean the panda enclosure, you’ll know that pandas are fond of hugging. Some people out there believe that pandas like to hug the legs of human beings because they enjoy climbing trees but this isn’t the truth. In fact, the reason why pandas are so fond of hugging the legs of people is because it gives them reassurance and helps them to feel safe. Pandas hug humans they trust, such as carers, face to face and even lick their faces sometimes, just like dogs do. But why is this? Well, once a bond has been established between a panda and its carer, this bond becomes incredibly strong. Some happy pandas have even been known to dance when their feeders arrive. Now, whether they’re dancing from happiness of seeing their feeder, or if they’re dancing because they’re being fed, we’re not entirely sure about. If we had to bet however, we’d say that it’s a combination of both.
Pandas are not common in the US – As you may have guessed, you will struggle to find Giant Pandas in the United States, even in zoos. The very first panda in the US, didn’t show up in a zoo until the year 1936. It was a cub at the time, and unfortunately it was alone as the next one didn’t make an appearance for nearly 50 years later.
Giant Pandas are omnivores – Some people wrongly believe that Giant Pandas are herbivores and that they only eat bamboo and leaves. This however, is not true. You see, Giant Pandas love eating bamboo, like seriously, they love the stuff, and it does make up 99% of their diet. It isn’t all they eat though, as pandas are actually omnivores. Now, an omnivore eats meat and plant-based foods. Pandas primarily eat bamboo and leaves, but in the wild they have been known to kill and eat small sheep and farm animals, plus they eat bugs, insects, and fish as well.
Pandas love to eat – We know that all animals love to eat, in fact, we ourselves love to eat, but pandas take this to a whole new level entirely. Giant pandas will spend as much as 16 hours per day eating. On average, a giant panda will consume 12kg of bamboo in just one day! That’s an extraordinary amount of bamboo for just one creature to eat.
Pandas can be aggressive – We know that pandas have a reputation for being cute, cuddly, and a bit clumsy, and most of the time that’s exactly what they are. However, there have been instances where pandas have been known to become aggressive, and as they’re so big and so powerful, they can be quite ferocious. If a giant panda is startled, attacked, or cornered, it will become very aggressive. They’re teeth and claws are incredibly sharp and powerful, and are more than capable of removing a limb from a human like stripping meat from a chicken bone. So, the best advice we can give you when it comes to giant pandas, is to stay on their good side because if you don’t bother them, they won’t bother you. Actually, they may bother you, but as long as you’re nice to them the only bother they will give will be to come over for some affection, and obviously some food.
Pandas can get “drunk” on water – All animals need water to survive in the wild, but pandas are especially picky about the water that they consume. Pandas in Sichuan for example, choose their habitats very carefully. They prefer mountainous regions with a lot of trees to climb. You see, although pandas appear to be big and sluggish, they are actually very agile creatures and can scale even the tallest of trees in a matter of seconds in some cases. As for the water however, they’re very particular about what they drink. Pandas will only set up shop, as it were, near a fresh water source. Pandas have been known to drink so much water that they physically cannot move because their stomachs are so full, so they simply lay down close to the water and have a snooze until they feel less-bloated. Some humans do this with beer, but pandas do it with water.
Panda poop has been used for decoration and tracking – No, we’re not lying, this is 100% true, as disgusting as it sounds. As mentioned, pandas spend much of their day eating their way through bamboo and other similar food sources, and it all has to obviously go somewhere. Giant pandas can poop as much as 28 kg in one single day, which is extraordinary when you think about it. What’s more, their poop can also be used for tracking them in the wild, because it points in the direction that they are travelling. Sadly in the past when they were hunted, it was used to hunt them, but now as they are endangered and we now help them, we track them for conservation efforts. As for the decoration part, any pieces of undigested bamboo found in the panda excrement was actually washed and used for decoration, as it would make mirror frames and picture frames that were used in buildings. We also have it on very good authority that it doesn’t smell in the slightest, so you’ll be very pleased to hear that.
August is the time for panda babies – Babies are cute. Baby animals are cuter still, but baby pandas could very well be the cutest animals ever created. If you’re looking to see a baby panda in the flesh, you will need to ensure that you keep august free. The reason for this is that pandas normally mate from March through to May, with gestation being 3 to 5 months. This means that typically most baby pandas happen to be born in August. In the wild, pandas carry one of two babies, but normally only the strongest of the two survives in the wild. In conservation centres however, the weaker cub is hand-reared and when it becomes stronger it is actually switched with its sibling so that the mother takes it in turns to raise both cubs. The one that is taken away for a while is then hand reared before the cycle repeats until the cubs are strong enough to fend for themselves. To help fund these conservation efforts, admission fees at the sanctuaries are normally put towards covering the costs. If it wasn’t for our conservation efforts, the giant panda would sadly no longer be with us today, but thankfully it is.
Pandas are very old – Giant Pandas have been on this planet a long time, and when we say a long time, we really mean it. We’re not talking tens of thousands of years, or even hundreds of thousands of years, we’re talking millions of years. That’s right, there are fossils of prehistoric pandas that can be traced back more than 2 million years ago. Back then they thrived in the wild and were found virtually all over China. Now however, they are only found in the wild in a very few select mountainous regions.
Pandas have a decent lifespan – So, we know that giant pandas were around millions of years ago, but how long do pandas tend to live on average? Well, it depends on their surroundings. In the wild for example, the average lifespan of a giant panda is around twenty years. This is because living in the wild is much harder than being kept safe and sound in a panda sanctuary. Pandas in captivity however, live an average of between 25 and 30 years, which is very respectable.
Pandas are a symbol of peace in China – As if we didn’t have enough reasons to love these cuddly bundles of fluff, how about the fact that in China, images of the panda are used to bring peace. You see, when ancient tribes in China were at war with one another, a flag with an image of a panda on it would be raised to call a truce or to end a battle.
Pandas were once white by legend – There is an ancient legend which tells of the fact that pandas were once all white. The story goes that one day, a panda was being attacked by a leopard. A girl came to the panda’s aid and sadly the leopard instead killed the girl. White pandas were said to have gone to the girl’s funeral and had black armbands made from ashes. As the pandas hugged each other and cried, the black ashes smudged, resulting in the black markings that are now commonly associated with giant pandas.
Why shop with Panda Shock?
Now that you know more about these amazing creatures, you will probably be looking to pick up some fantastic panda merchandise to help show your support for the giant panda. If this is the case, you’re at the right place. Here at panda shock, we truly care about the giant panda because we consider it our neighbour. We grew up with this amazing creature and we want to see it thrive in the wild once again. That’s why we created panda shock. Here you can pick up a whole variety of different panda-related merchandise. Just a few of the items on offer include: panda hoodies, panda stationary, panda badges, panda backpacks, panda costumes, and much more besides. Our online store has an extensive range of panda merchandise, all made to the very highest of specs and looking incredible. Head on over to our store and see what we have for sale today!