What Are People Doing to Help Giant Pandas?

As of 2014, conservationists, biologists and the Chinese government are working together to protect and increase the panda’s natural habitats. Scientists are also researching panda mating behavior in an attempt to understand it more fully and find ways to make mating easier for the pandas.

Habitat loss and low breeding rates are the primary threats to pandas, so efforts primarily focus on those issues. Researchers are working to discover how pandas find each other and choose mates. The researchers study factors such as pheromones, mating calls and social behavior to find ways to encourage both wild and captive pandas to mate. Since pandas sometimes give birth to two cubs but usually only care for one, biologists have developed techniques for caring for the second cub, so that both survive to adulthood.

The Chinese government works to enforce existing protections, such as bans on illegal logging and hunting. They are also working to set aside natural habitats for the pandas and determine ways to support panda migration through areas of human habitation. The government is working with biologists to see if tactics involving human assistance, such as placing man-made dens in areas where pandas live, might help panda mothers raise their offspring more successfully. China is also replanting the type of bamboo pandas need to survive to increase habitable areas for pandas.