International Day of the Panda
Today is the International Day of the Panda. A valid excuse to have a look at the cute giant panda. As you may know panda’s eat bamboo and we sell bamboo. But not to worry, we are not a threat to the panda’s. The bamboo we sell is actually a different species of bamboo to the one the giant panda eats. Continue reading to find out how that works exactly.
What is bamboo?
Firstly, its important to understand what bamboo is precisely. Bamboo is actually a fast-growing grass. Within 6-8 months it’ll reach its full length. After these first months bamboo will continue to harden for a few years. This is when the bamboo will harden and form itself to the bamboo you can buy at Bamboo Import Europe. In contrary to a tree, bamboo will actually grow back after cutting it down. In a way you can say that bamboo will recycle itself.
You can find bamboo in a lot of places. It actually naturally occurs on 5 continents: Africa, Asia, South America, North America and Australia. Basically everywhere except Europe and Antarctica. This also means that there are a lot of different species of bamboo. More than 1500! The giant panda only eats about 60 different kinds. The bamboo that gets harvested for commercial or industrial purposes doesn’t even grow in the mountains of central China where the giant panda lives.
The Giant Panda Diet
The bamboo menu of the giant panda is very special because the giant panda is originally a predator with canine teeth and the digestive system of a carnivore. Evolution forced giant panda’s millions of years ago to find a new source of food. That is how the appetite for bamboo began. Now 99% of their diet contains of bamboo. They eat it almost entirely: shoots, leaves and poles.
The giant panda eats about 60 different kinds of bamboo, but they do have their favorites. They always know to find the bamboo with the most protein. They also prefer the youngest leaves because those have more raw protein than the older ones. But they really prefer the bamboo shoots because they are most easily digested and have the highest amounts of protein. Panda’s actually poop quite a lot because bamboo is so hard to digest. Furthermore the bamboo also gives off very little energy. So panda’s have to eat almost all day and aren’t really active. Panda’s even had to evolve into having protective slime on their intestines to protect them from bamboo splinters.
So no need to worry, we truly love the giant panda. Do you know about Ouwehands Dierenpark in Rhenen? This is where you find Pandasia. This panda enclosure has been chosen to be “Worlds best Panda Enclosure” a few years in a row. This enclosure actually contains many bamboo poles from Bamboo Import Europe. That’s because we too think its import for the panda’s to enjoy a natural and beautiful enclosure. Last year a baby panda was even born there. This is a part of the international breeding program for conservating giant panda’s.