Bratislava Zoo started to breed the Red panda (Ailurus fulgens, or shining-cat) as first zoo in Slovakia. On July 5, a male Red panda named Pung was brought to the local zoo. He was born in June 2010 in the Parc Paradiso zoo in Cambron – Casteau in Belgium. He was grown by parents with whom he lived in an ideal family clan until he has been transported to Slovakia, the SITA newswire was informed by zoo’s public relations department.
Red panda’s habitat includes mountain mixed- and coniferous forests with bamboo growth in eastern Himalaya; in altitude between 2,200 and 4,800 metres over the sea level (in Nepal, Burma, China). Red pandas are about 52 to 56 centimetres long, with bushy and relatively long tail – measuring from 37 to 47 cms. Adults can be 3.70 to 6.20 kilograms heavy. These pandas live a solitary life in treetops. Males meet females only in the time of mating – beginning of winter. There are no visible differences between the sexes. Both males and females can mate with more than one partner. After about 134 days of gravidity, the female bears one, or exceptionally up to four cubs with birth weight of 100 grams. The babies are born in spring and summer, most of them in June. The growth of inseminated egg cell is slowed down during winter so that the cubs are born to favourable life conditions when there is enough food and higher average temperature.
Mother makes a nest in the tree-hole or in a rock’s cleft. After 90 days of the babies’ stay in the nest, mother takes them for night excursion to nearby palces. Altogether, they stay with mother for about a year, they mature at about 18 months. The female does not care for offspring. Red pandas can live up to 14 years, but in average they live for about 10 years. They are mostly active during night, and sleep during the days in their nests. At dusk, they leave and go searching for food – mainly bamboo offshoots and leaves, but also some berries, blossoms, roots and sometimes even birds’ eggs and insects. When in danger they flee ontop a tree, or they stand erected and show front clutches. Thie ronly known natural predator is the Snow leopard (Uncia uncia).
22. Aug 2011 at 0:00 | Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská