Don’t you wish that there was a place on Earth filled with cute fuzzy baby bears?
Well, that’s basically what The Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in China is.
Precious little baby pandas play and look adorable there all day long.
But The Chengdu Research Base isn’t just a panda bear daycare.
I mean, it is one of the most adorable places on the face of the planet.
But it also serves another purpose other than just being the place of all of our cutest dreams.
And a very important purpose at that.
The Chengdu Research Base is actually a special breeding center and nursery.
Its goal is replenishing the giant panda population.
Giant panda bears used to be on the “Endangered” list.
There were only about 1,200 in existence in the 1980s.
Thanks to conservation and breeding efforts, they were taken off the list in September 2016.
At that point, their population estimates reached 1,864, according to the New York Times.
After that, they were placed on the “Vulnerable” list.
But the giant panda’s natural habitat is still on the decline which could threaten their population further.
A study published in Nature Ecology & Evolution found that logging, human encroachment, road construction, and agriculture are dividing and destroying panda habitats.
The study came out just one year after the giant panda was put on the “Vulnerable” list.
The study found China’s gains in increasing its wild panda populations could be just “a short-lived conservation victory” if habitats aren’t looked after.
Environmental professors at the Chinese Academy of Sciences studied 40 years of satellite data to come to their conclusions.
They are urging the Chinese government to continue restoring environments where pandas can thrive, including the restoration of bamboo forests.
Giant pandas are iconic in China since it is the only place in the world where they can live outside of captivity.
That’s why the work at The Chengdu Research Base in China is so important.
And getting pandas to naturally breed is no easy task.
Female pandas can only breed two to three days out of the year and usually only give birth to one cub every two years.
So each panda that is born at Chengdu is very special.
The non-profit breeding facility, which also hosts other rare animals, is located in Chengdu, Sichuan, China.
It was founded in 1987.
The facility started out with just six giant pandas.
These pandas were rescued from the wild, according to Wikipedia.
As of 2008, there were 124 panda births with the captive panda population growing to 83 pandas.
The Chengdu Panda Base aspires to”be a world-class research facility, conservation education center, and international educational tourism destination.”
They’ve partnered with several organizations to meet their goal.
They helped the Zoo Atlanta secure two giant pandas on loan.
The two pandas, Yang Yang and Lun Lun, have since produced five offspring.
They gave birth to Mei Lan in 2006, Xi Lan in 2008, Po in 2010, and Mei Lun and Mei Huan in 2013.
They’ve also worked with the University of Liverpool, San Diego Zoo, Edinburgh Zoo, and Calgary Zoo.
The Chengdu Panda Base has allowed so many parts of the world to experience the joy found in giant pandas.
But that’s not even the best part about the organization.
The best part is that you can visit.
Yes! You can see the panda daycare up close and in action with a trip to China. The Chengdu Panda Base is a popular tourist destination.
And who wouldn’t want to take a trip to see these little babies?
Look how precious they are with their handlers bottle feeding them.
I can only imagine what an incredible sight it is to see.
Tourists can enjoy the Chengdu Panda Base as an educational facility where they can learn about the pandas and other animals that live on site.
The Chengdu Panda Base is beautifully situated and features gorgeous bamboo plants and other beautiful flowers and foliage.
In addition to giant pandas, the Chengdu Panda Base hosts red pandas, swans, peacocks, birds, butterflies and hundreds of insects.
But these little chubby babies really are the star of the show.
Visitors at the Chengdu Panda Base can closely observe the giant pandas at different stages in their lives.
They’ll find adults and babies eating, drinking, playing with each other and toys, or nursing their cubs.
Visitors will also learn about environmental protection and conservation during their stay.
They’ll even learn how they can protect pandas.
There’s also another big project happeneing at the Chengdu Panda Base.
“The Giant Panda Museum, a landmark of the Panda Base, to be opened to the public will be an exhibition center that showcases giant panda protection achievements, promotes science, and educational tourism. It will fully present the evolution and current situation of giant pandas and increase awareness of how visitors can protect endangered or rare species through a number of experience-based activities,” their website says.
As if seeing these adorable little babies weren’t enough!
Looks like we’re going to have to save up for a trip to China.
These little bears are just too sweet looking for words!
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You can learn more about the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding at panda.org.cn.
You can donate to the Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Research Foundation here.
Learn more about the organization’s programming here.
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