More than 1,590 pandas remain scattered in the wild across vast areas of Sichuan, Shaanxi, and Gansu provinces in 2004.
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China has succeede in artificially breeding more than 100 endangered Giant pandas since the first such bred cub was born in 1963 in Beijing Zoo. By 2003, the artificially bred baby panda’s chance for survival in Sichuan Province had improved from less than 30 per cent to 90 per cent. In 2002, Chinese scientists succeeded in cloning the Giant panda’s reproductive hormone gene which they hope will improve the animal’s ability to breed in captivity. In addition to improving the panda’s reproductive rate, scientists have put in place aggressive programmes to protect those living in the wild. About 1,000 of the rare species live in Sichuan, northwest China’s Shaanxi and Gansu provinces, where more than 40 reserves have been established. In Sichuan, Shaanxi and Gansu, the area of nature reserves totals 16,200 square kilometers. Meanwhile, the government’s efforts on environmental protection have paid off with an increase in pandas’ habitats. Nearly 20 corridors have been built to connect isolated reserves by artificial forests and helped Pandas living in different areas communicate with each other so as to increase breeding opportunities. Legal moves to protect the Giant panda were first made in 1957 and poaching and destruction of their habitats are illegal in China. The Giant panda protection center has created a semi-wild condition for Giant pandas in captivity to live and prepare to return to the wild.
To save the precious animals, the Ministry of Forestry started the construction of 17 “biological corridors” connecting existing habitats and reserves, as part of the Giant Panda and its habitat Conservation Project. More than 1,590 Pandas remain scattered in the wild across vast areas of Sichuan, Shaanxi, and Gansu provinces in 2004. They were separated in reserves or isolated groups which accommodated anywhere from just a few up to 100 pandas. The biological corridors, which is forest run About 2 kilometers wide between two areas of natural habitat or between a habitat and a reserve, have concealed the Pandas from roads and villages and enabled different groups of Pandas to meet. According to the overall protection plan for Giant pandas, ratified in 1993, the ministry improved the 13 old reserves and set up another 14. The work was completed in 2003.
In a long-term Sino-US co-operation rogramme, Chian will use the annual US $ 1.2 million fund provided by a group of US zoos to construct more panda reserves and the biological corridors. In return, the US San Diego Zoo has been doing conduct reproduction research on two Chinese pandas. Experts said that international co-operation in research on the breeding of endangered species including the Giant panda is of great significance. A giant-panda breeding center in the Wolong Reserve, Sichuan Province, currently has 20 wild Pandas taken from different areas inhabited by the Giant pandas. These Pandas cannot be returned to the wild after being rescued and artificially fed. But they should enable the center to breed “genetically perfect” pandas. They have been sporadic recent reports of baby Pandas being Seen in the wild. This suggests that reproduction is taking shape after the catastrophe in the 1980s when arrow bamboo, giant pandas’ staple food, blossomed and thus became inedible. More than 1,590 Pandas in the wild shows that the animals have made their first step put of the shadow of extinction.
Professor Pan Wenshi has been engaged in scientific research and field inspections into wildlife including Giant panda and white-headed leaf monkey, and has won numerous swards and recognition for his work in wildlife protection. He is a recipient of the Paul Getty Prize, the highest prize given by the World Wildlife Fund. Professor Pan and other researchers of his team have put radio collars in Giant pandas to help gather information About their habitats, frequency of activities, seasonal migration, mating and food gathering habits. They have also conducted ground investigations and studied behaviour patterns with the help of satellite remote sensing. Pan Wenshi attributed the shrinking population to increased human activities. Professor Pan’s theory About the long-term survival of Giant pandas is echoed by Zhang Hemin, head of the China Giant Pandas Protection Center at Wolong, Sichuan Province, and Zhang Guiquan, another Giant panda researcher with the same center. Both Zhangs have said the impact of human beings on nature is the main cause of the decline of the Giant panda.
One of the most famous mammals in the world, the Giant panda is meet and looks like a bear. With the exception of its shoulders, its limbs and the rims of its ears and eyes, which are black, this lovable animal is white all over. Zoological research has proved that the Giant panda came into existence 600,000 to 700,000 years ago. Giant Pandas live in humid and dense bamboo groves in mountainous areas at altitudes ranging from 2,000 to 4,000 meters. They are afraid of living in extreme weather conditions and make their lairs in tree holes or mountain caves. Chinese Pandas now symbolize the friendship between the Chinese people and the peoples of other countries. They have been sent to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Japan, the United States, France, Britain, Germany, Spain, Mexico and other countries.