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Red Pandas

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1241646.  Thu Jul 06, 2017 12:13 am Reply with quote

Red pandas are one of my favourite animals! I’m doing a red panda animal encounter in August and am curious to learn more about them – what are your favourite red panda facts?

I’ve learned that they’re actually classified as their own unique family: the Ailuridae. Like koala bears not actually being bears, red pandas aren’t actually part of the panda family. They’ve been grouped with pandas as they also have an extended wrist bone that acts like a thumb, and have been grouped with racoons because they share physical attributes – most notably that stripy tail.

Though the most adorable fact about them has to be that they use their long, bushy tails as wraparound blankets in cold weather!

1241676.  Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:17 am Reply with quote

I looked it up on the Wikipedia article, being unfamiliar with the animal, and I can definitely see the resemblance to a raccoon.

1241697.  Thu Jul 06, 2017 11:43 am Reply with quote

But with teddy bear faces.

I don't think I'd heard of red pandas before, but I've decided that I like them!

1241706.  Thu Jul 06, 2017 1:02 pm Reply with quote


1241724.  Thu Jul 06, 2017 6:57 pm Reply with quote

suze - I highly approve of this decision. They are so adorable!

1241869.  Sat Jul 08, 2017 6:10 pm Reply with quote

Something else that makes red pandas super interesting is that they are the first non-primates to taste, and prefer, sugar substitutes! Previously it was believed that only primates were able to taste artificial sweeteners (aspartame in this study).

Philadelphia’s Monell Chemical Senses Center studied several zoo animals in 2009, having them choose between natural water and artificially sweetened water, and red pandas were the only animals to prefer the sweetened water. Another study in 2014 showed that giant pandas also have a sweet tooth, but prefer natural sweeteners.

Here’s a link to the 2009 study findings:

1241893.  Sun Jul 09, 2017 8:42 am Reply with quote

How many of us are viewing this thread using Firefox as our browser?

1241901.  Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:19 am Reply with quote

I am, but I didn't know Firefox was another name for a red panda - I can see why though.

1241927.  Sun Jul 09, 2017 6:18 pm Reply with quote

I didn't know that either! Firefox is the coolest nickname - they're also called cat bear apparently... that's much less cool haha

And annoyingly the icon image for FIrefox browser is a fox, not a red panda! So confusing

1244534.  Fri Aug 04, 2017 12:54 pm Reply with quote

Cincinnati Zoo welcomes a new addition.


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