The panda, what a magnificent animal. Hardly know any living being on earth that is so relaxed as they are. The most active time is feeding time around 9 in the morning. That’s when the little ones play, the grownups check their territory and then all eat. It is the cutest thing to see, and especially hear, them eat! They usually sit against a tree or in one of the man-made benches. And when I say sit, I really mean sit, on their butt, leg spread wide open and holding the bamboo in their hands.
They first rip the outer layer off with their teeth, break it into smaller pieces and then enjoy their piece of tree. It can take a while before they finish their breakfast, but that’s okay, since there is no agenda for the rest of the day. Did I just say that? Of course there is an agenda. Sleep…. What a life!
The most popular place to visit some pandas is in Chengdu, Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding. They have a breeding center and until just about a year ago you could hold the baby pandas if you just paid enough. Surely enough some lunatic spoiled it for us by dropping one. I just made this up, but it must be the reason right? In Chengdu you can see many pandas of all ages. The areas they live in are kept quite nicely and are not too small. But if Chengdu is a bit far to travel, no worries, they have at least a few pandas in every big city zoo in China.
China seems to have a monopoly on panda keeping, so the government rents out pandas to other countries. That’s how you can see them in some other zoos around the world such as The Netherlands , Australia and Austria. They first send a whole team to check if the accommodation is okay and if they grow the right bamboo. Yes, picky eaters those pandas. Just one kind of bamboo is good enough. It will cost the country about a million euros per panda to rent them for a period of ten years. If accidentally they have babies, then they are the property of China.
I say accidentally, since apparently pandas only have sex a few times in their life. Hmmm, I might have to rethink my career as a Panda.;)