… And that’s a hard life.
In fact, in the wild it is indeed a hard life. From birth till death – thanks to the cruel mistress, ’evolution’. Here’s a snapshot:
A baby panda ’pops’ out prematurely (this is normal for a panda) and weighs in at 1/1000th of its mothers weight – hardly a fighting chance. The risks from an over-bearing or just forgetful mother run a very high risk of another premature incident (“now, where did I put that little tyke of mine?” *Squelch*. “Ah. Found him!”).
But even if the panda makes it past these first few crucial months and is finally able to move on its own (from 6 months onwards) its problems are only just beginning.
It’s other threat unfortunately comes from us! We are destroying its wild habitats – bamboo conclaves – faster than you can say ’eats, shoots and leaves’.
Pandas were once found throughout China. Now there are less than 2000 wild pandas left in the world and they are only to be found in small spots within 3 of China’s western provinces.
… If we are talking about a panda’s life at Chengdu’s Panda Research station then the life is far from hard!
First, they are born and cared for meticulously and get to chill-out with their fellow panda buddies.
Then, when they are old enough they get a bigger playground all to themselves. Here, they get brought meals continuously. Lots and lots of fresh, rich bamboo – stems, leaves and all!
Then they get to sleep.
Then, well, eat.
Then just chill.
Perhaps a little chilling whilst eating (just to mix things up)!
Chill, whilst watching someone eat (novel).
I hope they know how lucky they are. That they think about their wild brethren between one scrummy bite of bamboo to the next.
No. That’s not fair…