Giant Panda Fact Sheet

Common Name:

Giant Panda, Great Panda

Scientific Name:

Ailuropoda melanoleuca

Wild Status:



Mountainous regions of central China


Central China and in Sichuan, Shaanxi and Gansu provinces


Dens from hollowed-out logs or stumps of conifer trees found within the forest.

Life Span:

30 years in captivity


4 to 5 feet tall and weigh up to 300 lbs.

Cool Facts:

  • Giant Pandas are 4 to 5 feet tall and can weigh up to 300 ibs.
  • Giant Panda has to eat 30 pounds or more of bamboo just to stay full
  • In captivity a Giant Panda can live up to 30 years old.
  • The Giant Panda does not hibernate like other bears.
  • A Pandas mating months are March to May and their gestation period is 3 to 5 months. This means August is the best time to see a baby Panda.
  • Giant Pandas by the age of 7 months can climb trees
  • Giant Pandas tend to be solitary but will become more social during mating season.


Giant Pandas are found in mountain forests in Southwest China.  They are considered a national treasure in China. They Giant Panda likes it's diet to consist mainly of bamboo but occasionally enjoys fish, small rodents and eggs. The Giant Panda does not roar like other bears. It is believed that there are about 2,060 Pandas living in the wild and about 100 living in zoos. The Giant Panda has a protruding wrist bone which they use like a thumb. This enables them to hold bamboo while they eat.  

Taxonomic Breakdown:

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Subkingdom: Bilateria
  • Infrakingdom: Deuterostomia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Subphylum: Vertebrata
  • Infraphylum: Gnathostomata
  • Superclass: Tetrapoda
  • Class: Mammalia
  • Subclass: Theria
  • Infraclass: Eutheria
  • Order: Carnivora
  • Suborder: Caniformia
  • Family: Ursidae
  • Genus & speciesAiluropoda melanoleuca

Conservation & Helping:

Giant Panda is considered vulnerable to extinction. They do not reproduce often and their habitat is in danger as populations grow in China.  As habitat destruction continues, so does their bamboo food. The Chinese government is trying to restore and protect their habitat and appears their efforts are having an impact. The Panda population is increasing but the fear of climate change looms in the background. If you would like to help the Panda, you can donate to the World Wildlife Fund.

For Teachers and Educators


Keep Exploring Defenders!