From: Brian Dooks, Yorkshire Post
Published November 4, 2008 09:41 AM

Climate change fears for threatened pandas

CLIMATE change may be about to affect the lives of rare species such as the giant panda according to researchers at York University.
They fear global warming is likely to result in substantial re-distribution of plants and animals.

There is particular concern for animals already struggling, such as the giant panda, which is hanging on in a small area of China.


A joint study carried out by the University of York and the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh with Sichuan University and the Kunming Institute of Botany in China focused on the effect of climate change on the bamboo, which is the giant panda's principal food.

Researchers discovered that while some types of bamboo reduced in range due to global warming, others actually increased.

The findings will provide important information to help to safeguard the endangered animal's future.

Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh, Professor Steve Blackmore, said: "Pandas spend 14 hours a day eating, and bamboo forms 99 per cent of their diet, so they are completely reliant on the right bamboo species being present in order to survive."

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