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WWF: Elusive Giant Pandas Photographed in China

New camera trap photos and video offer rare glimpse into panda habitat

Washington, DC – May 23, 2013 – Camera traps in China have captured images and video footage of giant pandas and other species that are often difficult to see in the wild. The photographs and video are some of the most amazing images ever of pandas, red pandas, Milne-edwards’ Macaques, leopard cats, and other species in their remote habitat, which were caught on film as part of long-term wildlife monitoring projects set up in panda nature reserves by the Chinese government and World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

Video footage:


“These photos offer a fascinating glimpse into the lives of giant pandas, as well as other animals, which are difficult to see in the wild,” says Dr. Sybille Klenzendorf, managing director of WWF’s species program. “They demonstrate that by saving the iconic giant panda, we secure a vibrant future for other incredible wildlife, wild places and people – it’s the best kind of win-win proposition.”

“The multimedia materials were obtained under circumstances where there was little external disturbance and therefore they truly reflect the conditions of those species in the wild,” said Jiang Zeyin, species programme officer at WWF-China.

The materials were captured in 2011 and 2012 by more than 100 infra-red camera traps set up in six nature reserves by WWF and its partners from the local forestry authority as part of the monitoring effort under the giant panda conservation program.

From the footage, WWF conservation officers have gained a better understanding of the impact of human activities on the species and management of nature reserves, according to Jiang Zeyin.

China is considered one of the 12 globally recognized “mega-biodiversity” countries, with more than 6,500 species of vertebrates representing 14 percent of the global total. However, the population of some of the most charismatic and integral species in China, including the Amur tiger, musk deer and the Yangtze finless porpoise, have undergone a marked decline that was particularly severe between the 1960s and 1980s.

WWF was the first conservation group invited into China to study the giant panda. It is estimated that only 1,600 giant pandas remain.



Video footage*:


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