In honor of the Giant Panda being taken off the Endangered Species List and down-listed to Vulnerable at the recent IUCN World Conservation Congress, here's a video I took in March 2012 of the small, but mighty, Gao Gao being, well, a Panda.
There has been a 17% increase in the Giant Panda population within the last decade. My panda t-shirt that says there are only 1,600 left in the wild is now wrong, with the count now believed to be over 2,000 pandas! They say the panda’s dramatic comeback is largely due to research-fueled conservation efforts in China and scientists around the world that have contributed to the effort, which includes researchers at San Diego Zoo Global, which includes me! I am very proud to have been a part of that team and hope some of what I contributed during my 5 years at the Panda Research Station helped the cause. GO PANDAS!
There are still threats to the Giant Panda, so the struggle, and research, is not over. Best of luck to the panda team in keeping the panda moving down the IUCN Red List!