Red panda


Fast Facts

Type:MammalDiet:HerbivoreAverage life span in the wild:8 yearsSize:Head and body, 20 to 26 in (50 to 65 cm); Tail, 12 to 20 in (30 to 50 cm)Weight:12 to 20 lbs (5.4 to 9 kg)Protection status:EndangeredSize relative to a 6-ft (2-m) man:


The red panda is dwarfed by the black-and-white giant that shares its name. These pandas typically grow to the size of a house cat, though their big, bushy tails add an additional 18 inches (46 centimeters). The pandas use their ringed tails as wraparound blankets in the chilly mountain heights.


Red pandas have a taste for bamboo but, unlike their larger relatives, they eat many other foods as well—fruit, acorns, roots, and eggs. Like giant pandas, they have an extended wrist bone that functions almost like a thumb and greatly aids their grip.

Mating habits

They are shy and solitary except when mating. Females give birth in the spring and summer, typically to one to four young. Young red pandas remain in their nests for about 90 days, during which time their mother cares for them. (Males take little or no interest in their offspring.)