Smiling Panda and a walking Chinese lantern will be the mascots for the 2022 Winter Olympics and Paralympics in Beijing.
The Panda named Bing Dwen Dwen, is the Olympic mascot and Shuey Rhon Rhon, based in a traditional red lantern, the the Paralympic mascot. The Panda is China’s most prized symbol.
The choice of the iconic animal as the mascot was not a surprise to the people of China where it is considered a national treasure. The giant panda was one of the five mascots for the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics, and it was also the symbol for the Asian Games in Beijing in 1990.
The giant Panda’s scientific name is Ailuropoda Melanoleuca. It grows to a height of about 5 feet with a tail length of 10-15 cm. Males are 10% larger and 20% heavier than females. Giant pandas weigh about 150 Kg.
Pandas are found in six mountain ranges of China’s Sichuan, Shaanxi and Gansu Provinces. There are nearly 67 Panda reserves in China.
Along with WWF, China has developed bamboo corridors to link isolated pockets of forest. This allows the bears to move to new areas and find more food.
These black and white bears eat up to 14 hours-a-day. Nearly upto 38 Kg of bamboo can be devoured in a single day. As bamboo contains very little nutritional value, a Panda must eat 12-38 Kg every day to meet the energy requirements. Only 1% of their diet contains meat and other plants.