Pandas eat bamboo because they have evolved to do so. Experts believe pandas eat bamboo because pandas are unskilled hunters that prefer bamboo due to the fact that it is readily available year-round. After thousands of years eating bamboo, pandas have developed a liking for it and prefer it to meat.Continue Reading
Experts agree that pandas are the descendants of carnivores with a digestive track fit for digesting meat, however pandas simply prefer bamboo. This is not to say that pandas never eat meat. According to How It Works, pandas eat meat occasionally when it is offered. The World Wide Fund for Nature or WWF, states that pandas sometimes hunt for pikas and rodents. According to the WWF, however, only 1 percent of the panda’s diet comes from meat and plants other than bamboo.
Another reason why it is curious that pandas eat bamboo is because bamboo does not digest well. Pandas lack the digestive enzymes and bacteria needed to digest the cellulose prevalent in bamboo and other plant matter, and as a result, pandas absorb few nutrients from bamboo. Since pandas are only able to absorb about 20 percent of its nutrients from a bamboo meal, they must eat large amounts to garner enough nutrients. According to the WWF, pandas must eat approximately 12 to 38 kilograms of bamboo every day to absorb the nutrients they need. For these reasons, experts believe evolution must have favored pandas that ate bamboo instead of meat. In other words, the bamboo-eating pandas survived.Learn more about Pandas
Pandas use their physical strength, large molar teeth and strong jaw muscles to protect themselves. They also rely on their natural climbing and swimming skills to flee from predators if the occasion calls for it.Full Answer >
The red panda has markings reminiscent of the giant panda, but it boasts a red, black and white coat. Despite its markings and name, the red panda is in its own taxonomic genus, although in the past it was thought to be closely related to both giant pandas and raccoons.Full Answer >
To save the panda from extinction, the rich biodiversity such as plants, landscapes and other animals that surround the pandas must also be preserved, as it is necessary for their survival. The removal of any species has dramatic consequences for those that remain. Pandas also economically benefit their local communities.Full Answer >
In the past, giant pandas were killed for use in medicine, but hunting these gentle animals is now banned in China. While the ban has led to a decline in poaching, poachers still occasionally kill giant pandas for their fur. As of 2014, 1,000 to 1,600 giant pandas remain in the wild and in captivity.Full Answer >