Giant Panda’s Tail


When we think of the giant panda, we immediately think of a black and white animal with a chubby body and a round white head with large black eye patches and black ears.


Few people think about the giant panda’s tail. “What! Does the panda have a tail?” 


We can clearly see that at the time of its birth the panda has a tail.


During childhood, the fuzzy little tail is very cute


“The warm sunshine feels so good. Do you see my little tail?” asks the sub-adult panda. 


At an adult age (giant panda on the left), the little tail has become thick and furry.


Generally, the newborn giant panda weighs 120 to 160g with a body length of 13 to 16cm. At this time, its tail length is one fourth of its body length. When the giant panda grows up, its weight reaches 80 to120kg, and its body length reaches 1.2 to 1.8m. But its tail grows far more slowly than its body. An adult panda’s tail is shorter than one tenth of its whole body. so that the tail sometimes goes unnoticed on its chubby body. In addition, the giant panda usually keeps its tail tucked close to its body, and does not swing it to express its feelings like other animals such as cats and dogs. As a result, its tail becomes imperceptible and is often ignored.


A giant panda’s tail is not used to express feelings, but this does not mean that it is useless. In a giant panda’s world, its tail plays a very important role.


The giant panda marks with a mixture of urine and excreta of the circumanal gland.


The giant panda’s tail is short and looks fluffy and thick. There is a naked area at the root of tail, and numerous glands are located there. The gland is called a circumanal gland, and it can discharge excreta with an acidic odor. 


A grown giant pandas has a strong awareness of its territory. It will use its rough brush-like tail to smear odor on tree stumps, walls, ground and surfaces where it usually frequents. Other giant pandas will avoid these places with such odors when passing by. During breeding season, a female giant panda can also mark with a special odor to tell a male giant pandas that it is ready to mate. With the help of a special “GPS guided system”, male giant pandas can find the female giant panda.


The giant panda’s little tail plays a significant role in building a civilized system of family. Silent communication is almost equal to a voiced exchange. (PS., the giant panda’s tail is white!) 






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