Zoo Boise, a division of Boise Parks and Recreation, is thrilled to announce the arrival of two endangered Styan’s red pandas. This is an exciting addition to the zoo at a time when efforts are underway to build a new, state-of-the-art home to help these special animals thrive in Boise.
The rare Styan’s subspecies of red panda is larger with thick dark hair due to typically being found in colder places. The male and female [pictured above] red pandas arrived in Boise from the San Diego and Milwaukee County Zoos in early July and are adjusting well.
“The addition of these red pandas at Zoo Boise is the direct result of the incredible care our zoo staff gives to each and every one of our animals,” said Boise Parks and Recreation Director Doug Holloway. “I’m proud of our team and we look forward to introducing these endangered red pandas to the community as we continue to support this important species.”
The two red pandas have been matched as part of the Red Panda Species Survival Plan, one of many important Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) conservation programs. The program’s primary role is to serve as a breeding program for selected endangered or threatened species – a special animal dating service, if you will. The goal is to maintain a healthy and genetically diverse population for these animals to increase their numbers and be able to reintroduce certain zoo-bred animals into their natural habitats if necessary.
The community can meet the zoo’s new Styan’s red pandas from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily in the Red Panda Exhibit near the Zoo Farm entrance. Meanwhile, Zoo Boise’s 13-year-old Himalayan red panda named Spud can continue to be found in his home located by the carousel.
In conjunction with this announcement, Zoo Boise is building a state-of-the-art Red Panda Complex that will provide ample space for multiple pairs of red pandas to live and play, additional climbing opportunities for the pandas, nursery windows for guests to observe cubs, accessible pathways, and more. The new, larger exhibit will resemble an Asian forest full of lush vegetation.
FRIENDS OF ZOO BOISE ‘HEART OF THE ZOO’ FUNDRAISING EFFORT
Zoo Boise and its non-profit arm Friends of Zoo Boise are seeking support from the community through donations and the purchase of commemorative tiles that will become part of the new red panda home at the zoo. By contributing to this initiative, individuals can actively participate in the conservation of these remarkable animals and the preservation of their natural habitats. Learn more about this exciting project and other upcoming changes at the zoo online.
Zoo Boise and Boise Parks and Recreation have turned the act of visiting the zoo into a conservation action. Since 2007, visits to Zoo Boise have generated more than $3 million towards the conservation of animals in the wild. Zoo Boise is accredited by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, a national organization that supports excellence in animal care, conservation, education, and science.
Photo courtesy of Milwaukee County Zoo.