Bamboo distribution in Nepal and its impact on red pandas. In
Bista, D., Bhattrai, B., Shrestha, S., Lama, S. T., Dhamala, M. K., Acharya, K. P., ... & Sherpa, A. P.
Red Panda: Biology and Conservation of the First Panda, (pp. 353-368).
5 November 2021
Bamboo availability is a central aspect of red panda conservation. However, its diversity, distribution and contribution to the species’ diet is unknown. This study aimed to enumerate bamboo species, map their distribution and evaluate their contribution in the red panda diet. We recorded 13 bamboo species. Of these, 11 bamboo species contributed 99% of the total bamboo constituent present in red panda diet. The four bamboo species, namely Thamnocalamus spathiflorus, Yushania maling, Yushania microphylla and Drepanostachyum falcatum contributed more than three-fourth of the total contributions in the diet. Red panda could be vulnerable to bamboo loss, and the level of vulnerability could be severe, especially during the bamboo flowering events. We suggest plantation of alternative bamboo species, regulate bamboo harvesting and manage connectivity in the red panda habitat.