What’s black and white and cute all over? Newly released video shows a panda cub ambling behind its mother one peaceful morning, on a forested ridge deep in China’s Anzihe Nature Reserve. Pandas depend on their mothers for the first months of their lives and stay with mom until around age two.
Mom-handled! Mama panda obviously has places to see and bamboo to eat as she grabs the cub by its scruff to get a move on. In the wild, female giant pandas produce young only every other year.
A snack on the way? If you look closely, screen right, the only thing moving in the otherwise still forest is a shiver of some bamboo. Our guess is they stopped for a bite—or tried to climb the plant. Despite their bulk, pandas are excellent tree-climbers.
Giant pandas are more than an icon for nature conservation.
The Yangtze Basin, where pandas live, is home to millions of people and a stunning array of wildlife. WWF works with the Chinese government’s National Conservation Program to help protect the giant panda and its habitat. Thanks to this program, panda reserves now cover more than 3.8 million acres of forest, including the Anzihe Nature Reserve where this footage was captured on camera traps supplied by WWF.
This charming footage is a valuable conservation tool as it is part of a larger effort to monitor giant panda populations and develop strategies to save the world’s rarest—and possibly favorite—member of the bear family.