We are still over the moon about the Red Panda Exhibit that opened at the WNC Nature Center on Valentine’s Day this year.
Our pair of red pandas came to the WNC Nature Center from the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago. The female, Leafa, is 10 years old and the male, Phoenix, is 7. The two have lived together and had offspring in the past. So there is hope they will do so again!
Red Pandas Exhibit opening day
Red pandas are the first species to be introduced to the Nature Center’s new Prehistoric Appalachia project, part of the Center’s 2020 Wild Vision.
Skeletal remains of the red panda’s close cousin, the now extinct Bristol’s panda, were discovered at the Gray Fossil Site in Tennessee and are estimated to be 5 million years old. Red pandas are currently endangered with several thousand individuals remaining in the wild.
The WNC Nature Center red pandas will be part of the Species Survival Program (SSP) associated with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). The Nature Center is proud to be among just 10% of zoos in the nation to be accredited through AZA.
Go see them!
For more information or to plan your visit, go to the WNC Nature Center webpage.