The International Red Panda Day(IRPD) is annually observed across the globe on the 3rd Saturday of September to create awareness and support the conservation of Red Pandas and their natural habitats across India, Nepal and Bhutan.
18th September 2021 marks the observance of the 12th International Red Panda Day.
- IRPD 2020 was observed on 19th September 2020.
- IRPD 2022 will be observed on 17th September 2022.
i.International Red Panda Day was founded by the Red Panda Network in association with Nicki Boyd, Behavior Husbandry Manager, San Diego Zoo in 2010.
ii.The first international Red Panda day was celebrated on 18th September 2010.
About Red Panda:
i.Red Pandas are mostly herbivorous mammals that are classified into 2 separate species, the Chinese red panda (Ailurus styani) and the Himalayan red panda (Ailurus fulgens).
ii.Almost 50% of the red panda’s habitat is in the Eastern Himalayas.
iii.In 2011, Sikkim, India declared that the state holds an estimated 300 red pandas.
Challenges faced by Red Panda:
i.Habitat loss and degradation, human interference and poaching are the threats faced by the red pandas.
ii.The loss of nesting trees and bamboo resulted in the decline in red panda populations.
iii.Red pandas are endangered and are legally protected in India, Bhutan, China, Nepal and Myanmar.
Efforts to protect Red Panda:
i.The International Union for Conservation of Nature(IUCN) prioritized 4 actions for the conservation of red pandas, protect against habitat loss, reduce habitat degradation, reduce deaths of red pandas (through poaching and removing man-made threats), and improve awareness.
ii.According to the IUCN Red list, the status of the Red panda (Ailurus fulgens) is endangered species. The category indicated that the species has suffered a population reduction of 80% or more.