Cultural Practices And Human Activities On Wild Life Essay Samples
Historical and spatial view
The Giant Panda is a native black and white bear species to the south central China. It is also known as the panda bear or simply the panda. The mammalian is easily recognized based on its black patches around the ears, the eyes and across its round body. This colorful creature with black and white coat is adored by the world and considered as a national treasure by the Chinese people. Normally, most people employ the term giant panda in order to distinguish it from the unrelated red panda. However, the two animals belong in the same order of Carnivora. This species purely feeds on bamboo, which takes the biggest percentage of 99% while, on harsh environments such as in the wild, the panda could eat wild tubers, grasses and meat of small birds. Surprisingly, the Panda has got a special significance for WWF, and this is because it has been its logo since it establishing in the year 1961 (Stone & Keren, 2004).
The panda is the rarest member of the bear family; they mainly live in the bamboo forest especially in the mountains of western China. In this forest, the panda entirely subsists on bamboo thus the 99% of their diet. These bamboo forests are cool and wet hence, making it favorable for the pandas to enjoy their survival. During the summer season, the pandas may climb as high as 13,000 feet in order to feed on the higher slopes. The eating range is between twenty-six to eighty-four pounds of bamboo every day. This is one of the formidable tasks that could be performed by these bears. But they use their enlarged wrist bones, which function as opposable thumbs (Brian, 2008). Further, they may appear sedentary, but they are efficient swimmers and skilled tree climbers.
The habits of a Giant Panda
Pandas appear like the big cuddly bears; they are shy reclusive bamboo feeders and could love to be left alone. They like working in isolation hence, exercising the highest degree of shyness. “Shy miss panda” is the nickname given to the panda family by the Chinese people. This is because they often exhibit the element of shyness and coyness. This is evident from how they behave once confronted with a stranger. For instance, they cover their faces with a paw and duck their heads once they encounter a new person. However, the mother pandas do not exhibit the shyness especially if an individual interferes with the baby pandas. Just as other bear families, the mothers protect the young pandas from people who appear to interrupt their well-being.
Just like other animals, pandas are very playful and not the least bit possesses the element of aggressiveness. This has been noted by those people who have always lived in the mountains and have explored the beauty and nature of wildlife. For example, the mountain settlers have discovered that the pandas mischievously get into their homes whereby they play with kitchen pans and pots. At the long end, they end up discarding them in the woods after playing with them. Equally, they have been noted to befriend the domestic animals such as pigs and sheep whereby they eat and sleep together.
Pandas cherish and champion the water resource, and this is because of their love towards water. Due to this fact, the pandas make their homes near and along water sources. The pandas like drinking a lot and playing with water thus their habit of harboring near the water sources. Sometimes, the pandas over drink and funnily they act drunk hence, making it more beloved by the Chinese. The country legends love to watch the pandas exhibiting the element of drunkenness (Lai & Olesen, 2012).
Fond of climbing trees
The pandas are very playful and are good at climbing trees. In fact, they propose their partners, evade stronger competitors and run away from dander related approach by climbing trees. It is one of their defense mechanisms against their external attackers.
With the eccentric and uncommunicative temperament, the pandas cherish and champion the freedom of being alone. They have a unique way of survival and system of living whereby; they could sleep during daytime and search for food during the night hours. Most of their time is spent alone, and it is only during mating season when they come together for the mating activity. In most cases, the giant pandas exercise a very docile temperament. They conceal their true appearance by shading their faces and lowering their heads especially when they are confronted by human beings for the very first time. However, they consider their cubs untouchable and holy once they give birth. Normally, they burst into vigorous rage once their cubs are being watched by the visitors. The pandas can stretch their paws and open their mouths wide enough in order to make them comfortable (Stone & Keren, 2004). Equally, they can shake the water off themselves during heavy rains like dogs.
The communication version among pandas is through the scent makings, which are normally left in the habitat. Through the scent makings, they can trace and find their previous partners during the mating season. After, meeting their partners, they will communicate through funny sounds, which are barely understood by human beings. But during the playing period, the pandas will always remain silent without making the funny sounds. Therefore, it is easy to predict their behaviors based on their sounds production. Consequently, the scent making will help in dividing the habitat territories hence, making it easier for maintaining peace and order in their living ecosystems. The pandas will always leave their glandular secretions on tree stumps, grounds and walls of their habitats. Based on all these, the giant pandas could gather together or evade the stronger competitors (Lindburg & Karen, 2004). During the mating period, the scent of a female panda is a vivid indication that the female is ready for the male panda to mate. However, during the non-mating period the scents of newcomers could drive off the giant pandas thus evading the possible danger on the ground.
The influences of human activities in different ways
For centuries now, Chinese people have always shared the environment with the pandas. The two have relied on the world’s available natural resources for their livelihood. A good number of people live in and around the giant pandas’ habitat. For example, many of them harbor in the cities of Chengdu and Xi’an. Consequently, as the human economic activities increase, more people get into the already overburdened ecosystems for survival hence, the high environmental pressure.
Poaching of pandas
Humanity has turned against the other animal species across the world especially the pandas in China. It is quite unfortunate that some poaching of pandas still occurs, and such kind of an act translate to grave consequences for such an endangered species. Further, hunting has reduced the giant pandas’ population to lesser numbers. This dramatically increased upon the discovery of pandas in Boxing resulting in an influx of foreigner poachers who hunted unscrupulously in China. The fewer reputable individuals have always posed direct threats towards the survival of the pandas despite the national conservation policies. This comes as a result of super-normal profits made out of the giant pandas poaching activity.
The unrestricted expansions of human activities have been the major threat and collusion between man and the giant pandas’ species. With the huge urban development and packages of population growth, the aspect of deforestation is highly championed, which in return reduces and damages the living habitats for the giant pandas. Further, the construction of large-scale projects such as reservoirs, dams, roads, railway lines and settlement schemes has been the major contributing factor towards the decline and segregation of the giant pandas. The remaining one thousand six hundred giant pandas in China are densely distributed in Shanxi, Sichuan and Gansu provinces (Veeck, 2011). This is because the distribution of giant pandas has been reduced to ten thousand square kilometers from the initial fifty thousand square kilometers.
There are more than three hundred thousand people living in the mountains of Minshan whereby there are over five thousand tree species. Seventy-five percent of the trees are used for making Chinese local medicine. Unfortunately, most people here live below the line of poverty hence; making of the traditional medicine out trees is their only source of income. This illegal and unmanaged harvesting has disturbed the giant panda habitat and has equally resulted in the extinction of the local plant species (Fox et al., 2005).
Conclusively, the giant panda is a unique bear species with odd characters as compared to the unrelated red pandas. They exercise unique behaviors, which make them stand out for the entire world to notice and champion their existence. Their geographic distribution is in a few mountain ranges in Shaanxi, Gansu, central China and Sichuan provinces. Historically, it is told that the giant pandas once lived in lowlands but following economic related human activities, and the pandas are now restricted to the mountains. The human activities are the primary contributors towards the depletion of natural resources and wildlife particularly the giant pandas in the Chinese territories. However, with the enforcement and critical implementation of conservation and management policies, the survival of giant panda species will come to pass.
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