In the animals' world, the giant panda enjoys a special reputation. With a long history of evolution, the giant panda is regarded as the "living fossil", and the national treasure of China.
Unsociable and eccentric, giant pandas live in a solitary existence in dense bamboo forests. Though the giant panda is a carnivorous animal, 99% of its food is bamboo type plants, and bamboo shoots are its favorite. The giant panda is good at climbing trees and is not afraid of frigid cold weather. It loves to drink water and does not take winter sleep. In winter with a temperature of -4°C to 14°C, we can still find the giant pandas enjoy themselves in the snow-covered bamboo forests.
According to the textual research, over two million years ago, giant pandas were widely distributed in the southern part of China. Today when the giant panda is on the verge of extinction in the world, we can only find it in the remote, thickly forested mountains in Sichuan, Shaanxi and Gansu provinces. Now the number of giant pandas in China is less than 1,000 living in about 20 isolated areas.
To save and protect the giant panda, the Chinese government has adopted a series of effective measures. China has set up 32 nature reserves in Sichuan, Gansu and Shaanxi, with the main purpose of protecting the giant panda. The Constitution, Forest Law, Wild Life Protection Law, Environmental Protection Law and Criminal Law include the provisions on the protection of the giant panda. In addition, the Chinese government has put into practice the "Protection Project of the Habitats of Giant Pandas", and the "Protection Project of the Resettlement of Giant Pandas". All these measures have not only effectively prevented the number of giant pandas from decreasing but also helped increase their number step by step.
In 1869 when a French priest Armand Pierre David introduced the giant panda to the world, there evoked a "giant panda craze" in the Western countries. Now as envoys of peace, China's giant pandas have visited the United States, Austria, Japan and other countries, and have made great contributions to promoting the friendship between China and foreign countries.
When the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) was founded in 1961, the giant panda was taken as a sign on the WWF flag and emblem, making the giant panda a symbol of the worldwide nature protection. In 1980 the WWF and the Chinese government reached an agreement that an international donation drive be launched to save the giant panda, and worked out a plan for protecting the giant panda.
The people all over the world have a common wish that the giant panda, known as a rare treasure, would coexist the humankind forever.