An endangered panda has made a new start with a new home at Woburn Safari Park – and she now has a gal pal!
Red panda Mambo has a flush new pad at the Himalayan Heights enclosure at the park, and has quickly become good friends with fellow new arrival Mali, who has been at Woburn since July.
And a third female will join the group later this summer, to form a bestie bachelorette group. Once they are old enough, the furry three will be part of the EEP (European Endangered Species Programmes) breeding programme.
There are now believed to be only around 2,500 red pandas left in the wild, making them an endangered species. Their survival is under threat mainly because of habitat destruction due to deforestation.
Laura Ashton, senior keeper at the park, said: "Mambo’s first instinct was to explore her new home straight away, and we can tell that she is already very relaxed. Naturally, they were a bit wary of each other at first but now that Mambo has settled in, they are getting closer every day."
Named after red pandas’ place of origin, the Himalayan Heights enclosure has a waterfall, a choice of outdoor nest boxes, climbing frames, a small bamboo plantation as a source of readily available food, and a walkway so that they can travel right over the visitors’ heads to access the indoor enclosure.