Marwell Zoo has welcomed its latest arrival – a red panda

There are hundreds of animals to admire at Marwell, including giraffes, tigers, meerkats, and penguins. There are also three adventure playgrounds and a train, in case the animals arent enough to keep the little ones occupied.
There are hundreds of animals to admire at Marwell, including giraffes, tigers, meerkats, and penguins. There are also three adventure playgrounds and a train, in case the animals arent enough to keep the little ones occupied.
0
Have your say

Marwell Zoo has welcomed a new animal to its park – a male red panda.

The three-year-old, called Peter, joined last month from a zoo in the Netherlands as part of the European Endangered Species breeding Programme (EEP).

Peter the red panda has joined Marwell Zoo. Picture: Jason Brown

Peter the red panda has joined Marwell Zoo. Picture: Jason Brown

He has joined the zoo’s female red panda Mei Mei in a new enclosure.

Marwell Zoo keeper Carrie Arnold said: ‘Peter has settled in really well to his new home with Mei Mei. They don’t seem fazed by one another and Peter has done a lot of relaxing and snoozing, which is what we’d expected.

‘Red panda breed once per year between January and mid-March, so we’re not anticipating any panda cubs soon, but we’re obviously hopeful for the future.

READ MORE: Popular Marwell Zoo pygmy hippo Wendy passes away

‘During breeding season typical behaviour includes a lot of scent marking, with males staying in close proximity to the female until the female is receptive to a male’s advances, so we’ll be on the lookout for more interaction between them next year.’

Where are red pandas usually found?

Endangered red pandas are found in Nepal, India and Bhutan, as well as in China and Myanmar.

READ MORE: Rawr! These magnificent LEGO dinosaurs have arrived at Marwell Zoo

They prefer to live in forests with a bamboo thicket – often on the edges of mountain sides – where they can easily access the bamboo.

The new enclosure at Marwell is designed to replicate a red panda’s natural habitat, with lots of planted bamboo and thick low-lying bushes.