Chengdu Giant Pandas

As China’s National Treasure, the giant panda is one of the rarest animals in the world. The total number is estimated to be 1,500, including those living in the wild, and 80% of which are in Sichuan Province.

A breeding center for giant pandas was founded in the north suburbs of Chengdu. It is the only one of that kind in the world which located in a metropolitan area. In order to better protect wild giant pandas, Chengdu has established nature reserves in Dujiangyan City, Chongzhou City, Ya’an City and Dayi County. Sichuan Wolong Giant Panda Nature Reserve, the biggest Nature Reserve for giant pandas in the world, is only 130 km outside Chengdu.

Chengdu China Giant Pandas

The western world came to know giant pandas only after a French missionary named David first discovered this species in Sichuan in 1869. Now, the somewhat clumsy giant panda is a symbol representing the World Wildlife Fund. They are also a messenger of friendly communication between Chengdu and international cities. Currently, giant pandas are also reared in U.S.A, Germany, Austria, Japan, Thailand as well as Mexico.

Chengdu has established the world renowned breeding and research base for giant pandas, which attracts almost 100,000 visitors each year. Covering tens of hectares with bamboo groves and a native-like habitat, the base is the only one of its kind located in an urban area. A museum is open to the public throughout the year.

NBA Players and Pandas in Chengdu

In 2008, after the release of the American animation movie Kung Fu Panda, DreamWorks CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg and other DreamWorks members visited the city of Chengdu. In addition to seeing live pandas, crew members learned about the local culture. Katzenberg has stated that Kung Fu Panda 2 incorporates many elements of Chengdu in the film. The film's landscape and architecture also found inspiration from those found at Mount Qingcheng, a renowned Taoist mountain. In an interview with Movieline, Berger stated that ‘we never really thought of this as a movie set in China for Americans; it's a movie set in a mythical, universalized China for everyone in the world'.

On January 11, 2012 six captive-bred pandas were released to a "semi-wild" environment in Dujiangyan, Chengdu. Scientists believe that success in the reintroduction project would potentially help save the endangered giant panda. Retired NBA basketball star and animal activist Yao Ming attended the ceremony.

Where to See Pandas in Chengdu

In Chengdu City, there are two places to see the giant pandas. One is Chengdu Panda Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, the other on is Chengdu Zoo

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