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Ya-an Bifengxia Panda Base

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Ya-an Bifengxia Panda Base Introduction

In 2002, the outbreak of SARS virus in China took away hundreds of lives. Disease and infection control was also a big concern among panda experts at Wolong of China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda, because at that time the panda base at Wolong was crowded with captive-bred pandas already. If an epidemic took place at the Wolong base, the whole population of pandas could be destroyed. It was against this background, the Bifengxia Panda Base was built in 2003 in Ya'an, where the giant panda was firstly discovered by westerns at Dengchigou Church and made into specimen named as giant panda as new species. So, Ya'an is also known as the native homeland of the giant pandas.

Ya’an Bifengxia Panda Base

Bifengxia Panda Base is located inside the Bifengxia tourism scenic spot, 150 km from Chengdu, 2 hours by bus. It covers about 400 hectares with an altitude about 1300 meters above deep gorges. The base is full of forest and bamboos with peaks wrapped by cloud and mist all year around. The picturesque views of mountains, gorges, rivers, forests and bamboos impress tourists that this should be what the real natural habitats for the giant pandas like.

Ya’an Bifengxia Panda Base

The size of the Bifengxia panda base is much bigger than the destroyed one in Wolong, and all the enclosures were built by simulating giant panda's natural habitats with thick bushes, tall and old trees and even pond. The base is an ecological fairyland integrates panda breeding, researching and education. Besides spacious wild-simulated enclosures, the base has breeding center, research center, hospital, nursery, laboratory and kindergarten for pandas.

Ya’an Bifengxia Panda Base

The establishment of the Bifengxia Panda Base turns out to be a very wise decision because of the earthquake in 2008. Before the earthquake in 2008, there were only about 25 giant pandas in Bifengxia; most of captive pandas in Wolong had to be sent here after the earthquake, by July, 2008, there had been 61 pandas living in Bifengxia. Since the enclosures were larger, many could be divided in half to accommodate the new arrivals. Till today, there have been more than 80 giant pandas living in Bifengxia.

Not only had giant pandas in Wolong moved to Ya'an, but also office of the China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda; however, this is just temporary, the center and the pandas used to be in Wolong will still go back to the Wolong Panda Nature Reserve once the entire reconstruction completes. The Shengshuping Panda Base in Wolong has been constructed well, so far, about 18 pandas have moved there from Bifengxia base, but the new base in Wolong is temporarily not open to tourists.