Beijing: Two wild giant pandas were spotted on Saturday on a highway in southwest China’s Sichuan province.
Chen Min, a worker with the forestry bureau of Jiajinshan Mountain, found two adult pandas walking on the highway. “There is a river next to the highway. They might have been drinking water there before coming to the road,” he said. A panda ran into the forest upon seeing Chen, while the other was still loitering. Chen recorded its movements on his mobile phone, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
According to Chen, this is the third time since last July that wild pandas have been spotted near the scenic site of the Qingyijiang headstreams in Baoxing County. Last year, a wild panda descended from Jiajinshan Mountain to steal honey from a villager’s house.
Official statistics showed that by 2013 in Baoxing County, there were 181 wild giant pandas, up 26.75 per cent from 2006. “Now the wild pandas are becoming bolder and always come down from the mountain,” Chen said, adding that in the past they were rarely seen.
Sichuan was home to 1,387 wild giant pandas as of the end of 2013, accounting for almost 75 per cent of the country’s total.