Everyone seems to know the cuddly logo of the Word Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) with the panda enjoying great popularity all over the world. Why is that? Is it because of their good nature? Is it because of their naturally peaceful serenity? Or is it because the panda is one of the most endangered species in the world? Why do these animals hold such a fascination for people worldwide?
Most likely, it is a little of each. The fact remains that despite all the efforts made to conserve the pandas, they are still a critically endangered species. Although new reserves have been established, their habitat continues to shrink. Luckily, scientists have achieved considerable progress in recent years when it comes to breeding. Also, ten years ago, a mortality rate of 100 percent was close to reality, but lately the tables have turned and almost all the pandas born in captivity grow to be healthy adults. This is due to decades of research, and investment of huge sums of money.
Because of our own passion for informative, high-quality trips, and commitment to this species, we aim to give you an understanding of the pandas' life, the problems they face, and to provide you with scientific information. What better way than to get in direct contact with panda scientists on the scene? This is why Hidden China entered into a close partnership with the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in the province of Sichuan. Together we develop innovative tourist products to promote informational and unforgettable experiences with this amazing species. As yet, interaction with the pandas is confined to taking pictures with the animals. We distance ourselves from this kind of unhealthy interaction. Instead we provide the opportunity to get to know the pandas under the guidance of an experienced keeper, feed the animals, and help perform a keeper’s daily tasks. This kind of sustainable interaction will bring you into a much closer proximity and relationship with the pandas.
Furthermore we provide access to the laboratories under the guidance of experienced scientists. During one day you will gain an insight into current research, for example, an understanding of breeding and artificial insemination (AI) and its problems and successes.
In addition we offer informative panda trips to children and school classes for a full week. During three days they will get to know the pandas personally at the Research Base and will then explore the animal's natural habitat on a two day camping trip to a panda reserve.