Panda Heartland Devastated by China Quake: Report

Experts are still assessing the damage from last month’s earthquake to the rare giant that live in the area, and say 8% of their habitat has been destroyed. From Reuters:

Only 1,590 pandas still live in the wild, all in China, and about 1,400 were in the part of the southwestern province of Sichuan that was rocked by the May 12 earthquake.

“The dense forests covering these places have now turned into bare land,” Yan Xun, a State Forestry Administration Official, was quoted as saying. “Landslides and forestry destruction pose severe threats to the lives of the surviving pandas.”

The caves and tree hollows where pandas live may have collapsed, torn-up land likely polluted some of their drinking water and paths to their food sources may have been blocked, Xinhua said.

Read also “Tears at quake zone panda funeral” from CNN.

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