Sad Footage Shows Two Red Pandas Roaming Through The Ruins Of Their Home In The Wild
For the very first time, biologists have captured footage of two fluffy red pandas in the remote wilderness of northern Myanmar. But while it may be hard not to smile at the sight of these much-loved animals, the conditions in which they were found to be living make it nothing short of heartbreaking.
According to Flora and Fauna International (FFI), the animals were spotted walking through the rubble left behind after a landslide that was caused by Chinese logging operations in their fragile ecosystem. For a few brief moments, they can be seen scaling the jagged rubble up to feed in a bamboo forest which has been "ruined" by deforestation.
"When we encountered the two red pandas, we felt two emotions at the same time; incredibly happy for the direct sighting and for obtaining this first exciting footage, but terribly saddened seeing the state of their habitat and threats to the species' survival," says Aung.
But this pair of red pandas are not alone in their plight. Throughout their increasingly fragmented habitat in the forests of Southeast Asia, the species is in decline. The International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources lists red pandas as "vulnerable" with fewer than 10,000 mature individuals remaining - a number that's dropping 10 percent every year.
Habitat loss is considered the biggest threat to the red panda's long-term survival, followed by poaching. The FFI is currently working with the Myanmar Forest Department to establish a protected area for these animals where they can live more securely in the patches of forest that remain.