Red Panda Day at Hellabrunn Zoo this Saturday

On Saturday 16 September, Hellabrunn Zoo will mark the celebration of International Red Panda Day with a range of activities to raise awareness for the adorable little cat-bear. From 10 am to 5 pm, there will be an info stand in front of the Red panda enclosure where visitors will have an opportunity to learn more about the Red panda as well as participate in a painting contest with great prizes to be won.

Copyright: Tierpark Hellabrunn / Jörg Koch

International Red Panda Day was launched by the Red Panda Network to raise awareness of the threats facing Red pandas in the wild. This year, Hellabrunn Zoo will join over 70 other zoos worldwide, including from Japan, China, New Zealand, the United States and France, taking part in the event.

The Red panda, also called the Lesser panda, is listed as endangered in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. There are only about 10,000 Red pandas remaining in their original habitat, the mountain forests of the Himalayas. Red pandas are mostly active from dusk till dawn and spend most of the day sleeping in tree tops. Their distribution area is increasingly shrinking due to the threat of ongoing deforestation. For International Red Panda Day, a team of conservationists at our info stand in front of the Red panda enclosure will inform visitors about the threat causes and what each of us can do to help preserve the species.

Other activities at the info stand include a Red Panda Talk at 2 pm during which a zookeeper will answer questions from visitors, as well as a painting contest for animal lover big and small to test their artistic skills in painting red pandas, with great prizes to be won. The Species Conservation Center at the zoo will also show the short film The Forgotten Panda throughout the day.

Hellabrunn Zoo is a sponsor of the conservation project the Red Panda Network and offers support in its efforts to protect the Red panda population in their natural habitat: the Red Panda EEP Forest Guardian Support Programme is a joint initiative of the Red Panda Network and the European Endangered Species Programme (EEP), and is part of a major conservation project in eastern Nepal. The aim of this wider project is to create a contiguous protected area in the Panchthar-Ilam-Taplejung region. Thanks to the Red Panda EEP Forest Guardian Support Programme, local rangers can be trained to monitor the protected areas and educate their communities about the importance of protecting the Red panda and its habitat.

There are currently two Red pandas living at the zoo: Miu was born at Krefeld Zoo in 2012 and has been in Munich since summer 2013; her partner Justin arrived at Hellabrunn from Safaripark Beekse Bergen in February 2017. Their enclosure is located between the Tao Garden and the Jungle World.