Thursday, 15 April 2021

Saving the red panda


Starved, unsheltered and clinging to survival

They are disarmingly adorable. With wide curious eyes and an appetite for heights, red pandas leap through the trees in a blur of red while uttering gleeful grunts.

For millennia they’ve played in the treetops of Myanmar’s forests in a blissful paradise, where they natter sociably, snuffle for acorns and attempt to climb to ever-higher branches.

Their acrobatics haven’t gone unnoticed by humans and they are a much loved element of the forests protected by the Indigenous People of the Imawbum Massif. 

These forests are home to stunning fauna and awesome flora which has been protected with exemplary efforts by the Indigenous People - standing strong for their local wildlife since time immemorial.

But in recent years the abundant forests have become popular - a popularity which comes with a devastating price.

A new wave of human society has arrived to reap the benefits of the forest for living space and resources. In the process, the treetops once adorned with red-and-white fluffy pandas have been ripped to the ground. The luscious green of the forest has been turned grey and ashen by roads, railways and torn up by mining.

The red panda’s main food, Himalayan bamboo, has been uprooted as their home was ravaged by agricultural expansion, leaving them to scavenge desperately for other food.

If they encroach upon land used for cattle, they are attacked by dogs introduced to protect herds - dogs who are often unvaccinated and spread canine distemper, which leads to an agonising death for red pandas.

Starved, diseased, the lustre in their fur gone, these red pandas become easy pickings for poaching and smuggling, scooped up and taken towards an unbearable future – a trade which is on the rise.

At every turn the pandas are faced with a torturous fate and the Indigenous communities simply cannot hold firm on their own anymore.

This downward spiral needs to end. Now.

We have to save them.

So, with your donations, FFI is helping support the Indigenous communities to ensure the protection of the forest once again. With the right expertise and resources, we can enable them to give the pandas a habitat free from impending danger, disease and food shortages.

This will not be easy, but there is still time to protect these wonderful creatures and - with your support - to stop the needless and avoidable loss of another species.


Please help save red pandas. If everyone reading this donates just £3, you could help give these communities the support they need to protect these animals from the new wave of threats. Thank you.

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