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Photo gallery: Piqi the red panda chomps on bamboo at her new Norfolk home

18:37 22 May 2014

Picture: James Bass

Picture: James Bass

Archant Norfolk © 2014

A young female red panda called Piqi, born in September 2013, has arrived at Thrigby Hall Wildlife Gardens from Colchester Zoo - and was welcomed to Norfolk with a gift of its favourite food, bamboo, which grows at nearby Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden.

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Louise Rout, manager of Fairhaven Garden visited Thrigby today to present the bamboo, a panda’s staple diet, as part of an ongoing programme of support.

Red pandas have fore limbs and ‘fingers’ able to reach and hold slippery stems and leaves.

More nutritious items like eggs are added to their diet at Thrigby.

The animal is a smaller relative of the giant panda and is native to the Himalayan foothills of India, Nepal and China, and are listed as vulnerable on the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) Red List of Threatened Species.

There are fewer than 10,000 adult red pandas in the wild and numbers are declining.

The new Thrigby resident is a genetically important young female, part of an international breeding programme. She brings the number of pandas at Thrigby to three.

Ken Sims, director of Thrigby Hall Wildlife Gardens, said: “It is very kind of Louise and the Fairhaven team to deliver fresh Broads bamboo to welcome the panda. She is settling well.”

Thrigby Hall Wildlife Gardens is at Filby and is open every day at 10am.

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