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Giant Panda Diet

1. How much bamboo do pandas eat every day?

Research in the Qinling Mountains in China showed giant pandas can consume, on average, 19 kilograms of fresh bamboo leaves per day.

2. Why do pandas eat so much?

The panda is a carnivore that acts like a herbivore. The panda diet is almost 100% vegetarian, but since it can digest plant material as efficiently as a goat or a cow, it makes up for this inefficiency by eating very large amounts of bamboo. Fortunately, the forests pandas live in have abundant supplies of their favorite food.

3. How much time do they spend eating?

In the wild, pandas usually spend 11 to 14 hours each day foraging for food.

4. How many species of bamboo can the giant panda eat in the wild?

Giant pandas can eat most of the bamboo species found in their habitat. Although most giant pandas depend on about 10 kinds of bamboo, they can eat more than 40 different species of the plant.

5. Do wild pandas feed only on bamboo?

No. The vast majority of their diet is bamboo, but wild pandas have also been found to eat carrion (the flesh of dead animals.)

6. What do captive pandas eat?

Captive pandas mainly eat bamboo, but are also fed fruit and specially-prepared dietary supplements.