The unbearable cuteness of being
Red Panda Day
One might assume that being an adorable, tree-lounging mammal often referred to as a “red cat-bear” makes for a pretty neat existence, but life as a red panda isn't all snacking on bamboo and being an independent cat-bear until it's time to mate. For starters, the sole living species of the Ailurus ailuridae family is also often referred to as a “lesser panda” (rude!) despite it not being closely related to the giant panda. Beyond that, it's classified as a threatened species, with fewer than 10,000 mature red pandas living in the wild.
The Sacramento Zoo aims to raise awareness around the much-adored species, which continues to be threatened by poachers and habitat loss by celebrating Red Panda Day. Attendees can participate in various educational activities in order to be named a “Red Panda Ranger” and can create a red-panda-themed flag that will adorn the exhibit. Visitors will also have the opportunity to partake in a raffle and silent auction featuring art, home décor and other red-panda-themed keepsakes. And of course, you'll get to feast your eyes upon the cuteness of these fox-bear-racoon-cat-looking little guys, who have the ability to stand for seconds at a time on their hind legs and make cartoonish chirping and squeaking sounds. Proceeds benefit conservation efforts of the Red Panda Network. $7.25-$11.25 includes zoo admission, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, September 27; 3930 West Land Park Drive; www.saczoo.org.