Is there really anything better in the animal world than a giant panda bear? You would be hard pressed to find something else, though everyone does have their own favorites. If you translate all those wild animals into the world of plush toys, next to the real thing, a giant stuffed panda is pretty terrific too.
In the bear family, the giant panda is its rarest member and is considered one of the worlds most threatened animals in terms of extinction. Panda’s are easily recognized as the World Wildlife Funds (WWF) all important logo and they have held that ‘position’ since the WWF was created in 1961. At that time, some of the worlds most leading scientists and conservationists had a meeting to determine how they could bring world wide attention to both threatened wildlife and wild places. In addition, they needed to find a way in which they could raise funds to assist and support ongoing conservation projects. As a result of that meeting, the WWF was created. Once the organization was launched, they needed a symbol that would best represent what they were trying to accomplish. The only giant panda that lived in the western world at the time, named Chi Chi, lived at the London zoo in the United Kingdom. She was beloved by all that came to see her and she was a rare animal like the pandas that lived in the wild in China. All of those things combined, led to giant pandas becoming the WWF’s permanent symbol.
Giant stuffed pandas can be ‘adopted’ at the WWF website where all proceeds go to the organization to help with its many conservation project.. Each adoption includes a kit which comes with a number of items that includes a giant stuffed panda. If you have no interest in the WWF website, any number of giant stuffed pandas can be purchased at a variety of Internet shops which has some of the most gorgeous plush pandas you will ever find. Some have one in fact, that is 3.5 feet tall! You can also purchase a plush bundle which includes three giant stuffed pandas.
Wild, giant pandas live only one place in the world: three provinces of mountain ranges in central China. They can be found at elevations of 5,000 and 10,000 feet where their preferred food of bamboo is located in heavy clouded and rainy forests. 99% of a pandas diet is made up of bamboo and they also supplement the remainder [of their diet] with grasses, and the occasional small rodent or musk deer fawn. A little more than 160 pandas also live in zoos and breeding centers around the world though most of them are in China.
While we may never be lucky enough to see a panda outside of a television show, the next best thing is a giant stuffed panda which serves as not only a cuddly companion, but a reminder that these beautiful creatures need our help to remain alive for as long as possible. BOLA TANGKAS