Panda numbers increase in China
Beijing: The number of pandas in the wild has increased from 14 to 41 over the past decade in China`s Shaanxi province, one of the country`s key panda habitats, due to the conservation efforts, said experts.
The increase is attributed to the pandas` improved reproduction and their migration from Xi`an, the provincial capital, to the surrounding areas, forest officials said.
Forest cover in Xi`an has increased from about 384,000 hectares in 2000 to the current about 454,700 hectares, Xinhua quoted the forest bureau as saying.
Pandas in Xi`an belong to Qinling subspecies, which lives in Qinling mountains of Shaanxi province.
Of the 1,600 pandas believed to exist in the wild in China, mostly in Sichuan province, only about 300 are in Qinling.
The government in 2000 restricted timber logging to retain the forest cover for panda conservation. Panda`s diet is 99 percent bamboo. They also eat other grasses and tubers.
Female giant pandas enter osetrus - come "on heat" and ready to mate - once a year, for a mere 2-4 days on average.
Usually they mate in spring and give birth in autumn, especially from August to September. A female giant panda in the wild could have 6 babies in her lifetime.
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