Shhh, whispered Boss Shao as he stopped and gestured toward the bamboo grove up ahead. Weaving through tightly packed confers, a few sunbeams spilled through to the arrow bamboo. The dense arrow bamboo blocked our view of the area around us. A noticeable snapping sound came from the bamboo grove, extraordinarily clear as it broke the science of the forest.’An animal is moving over there,” Boss Shao said in a low voice as he led us to a small wildlife trail.
Shao Liangkun, affectionately known as Boss Shao, has worked at the Wanglang National Nature Reserve for several years. He knows the terrain of the reserve like the back of his hand and is an invaluable asset with a great deal of institutional knowledge.
Because of the thick bamboo, we were forced to lower our heads and crouch to get through to the wildlife trail. As we processed, the noises we made alerted animals to our presence, and after a short silence, rustling noises emerged from the bamboo grove and then quickly faded away “It has inn away already we won’t see it again”, observed Boss Shao.
It was sweaty work climbing the slope, but at last we arrived the place where the noises originated. Upon further inspection, we discovered a Few gnawed arrow bamboo branches on the ground and a pile of fresh panda droppings. Panda feces are approximately 15cm in length, bright green, and shaped rather like an oversized olive pit. Each feces is covered by a thin layer of mucus on the surface and composed of partially digested bamboo stalks.
It was quite clear there had been a giant panda enjoying breakfast at this very spot and that it had run away by way of a hidden path in the bamboo groves when it heard us coming. “No worries, the path leading to the ridge ahead passes directly by the site where we installed an infrared camera. Perhaps it caught the panda’s image already”, Shao suggested optimistically. We rallied at his words and pushed ahead toward the spot where the infrared camera sat, poised to snap pictures of passing animal specimens.
Our tracking of these elusive creatures in the forests began here. infrared cameras we set in the forest became extensions of our vision, like pairs of unblinking eyes observing passing individuals at leisure or in a hurry in this panda territory.
Infrared Camera Facts
What is an infrared camera? In the Field of wild animal research and conservation, the infrared camera is short For Infrared-triggered Camera Trap.In a simple word, the infrared camera is a device for animals. The working principle of infrared cameras is based on its core components, a passive infrared thermal sensor. This sensor automatically detects sudden changes in heat in the area it covers. When a warm-blood Li animal passes in front of the camera, its body temperature is usually higher than the ambient temperature. A sensor captures this change in temperature, alerting the camera to take photographs or videos. Because the animal its triggers the sensor, the infrared c.to-tams are essentially enabling the animals to take . Because there is no on site and the camera can work,around the clock in any type of weather, there are many advantages to this method of recording and detecting wild animals.
In China, in Li cameras were in the giant panda nature reserves over, ago and included three phases:
Start and Exploratory Phase: In 2002, infrared cameras were First used in wildlife don and monitoring at the Tangjia River National Nature Reserve in Sichuan province under technological and financial support From the National Zoological Park and Peking University. On results of using these cameras verified the Feasibility of this technology to be used in the held. Simultaneously, the first batch of skilled reserve successful trained with the equipment.
Accumulation and Promotion Phase: Since 2004, more giant panda reserves installed infrared camera technology with support From scientific research institutes, competent departments of nature reserves, and conservation organizations. A series of infrared camera technology training courses were held in Sichuan and Shaanxi provinces, the trainees numbering several hundred, All were staff from more than 30 giant panda nature reserves and forest Farms. A regional infrared camera-monitoring network around the giant panda habitats had its rudiment beginnings.
Rapid Development Phase: A new generation of digital infrared cameras emerged in 2012.
Shortly thereafter, use of a systems in giant panda reserves rapidly. Infrared camera prices dropped and increased government support For nature purchasing and a more widespread reality.
With the wide applicittiol1 of infrared cameras,photos and videos were more availability. This data and information gradually opened the mysterious giant panda habitat, giving a completely diffract perspective from which to explore.
Giant Pandas Caught on Infrared Camera
Most urban people impressions of the giant pandas visiting a zoo. The animal, so often portrayed in teddy instantly, But what like in the reveal more about the creatures.
Carnivores on Camera
There are numerous mystical and rare animals sharing habitats with giant pandas in the dense forests, many of which are carnivores. They sit at the and upper level of the food chain and bio-net, regulating the balance of the entire ecosystem. Species numbers and populations change among the medium and larger ones, and can indicate the index of regional biological integrator and health conditions. Because many carnivores have a low population density normal activity
takes place at night. These animals have developed keen senses and take the initiative to avoid human contact. It is only with the help of infrared cameras set in the forest that humans are able to observe them at all.
Animals above the Tree Line via Infrared Camera
There is an often-ignored and unique area above the forest ecosystem where giant pandas live: the alpine meadow and bare rock zone. Harsh natural conditions like extremely cold temperatures, low oxygen saturation, and strong winds all limit the growth of trees, but create no less diversify than the forest below. Under the umbrella species of giant pandas, an alpine ecosystem in these reserves is also well protected and becomes one part oF panda habitat. in recent years, with the help of infrared cameras, the wild animals hidden in these areas are revealed to us.
As we continue to learn more, the infrared camera with its unique perspective provides us a possibility and opportunity for a better understanding of giant pandas in the wild. In these mountains and forests, we also appreciate a colorful and vibrant animal world. With the help of the infrared cameras, we witness the results of great effort toward conservation of giant pandas as a Species, the cameras will always keep working for scientific research, For monitoring, for Conservation, and for a hopeful panda Homeland.
Giant Panda Scent Marking Trees
Adult giant pandas remain solitary in the wild. How do they communicate with each other? The photograph was taken in the Sichuan Wanglang National Nature Reserve and showed a giant panda rubbing his hind quarters on a tree trunk. The right photograph was taken in the Shaanxi Changqing National Nature Reserve over time when several pandas passed along this ridge. Each individual stopped in front of a particular tree and sniffed carefully. In fact, the trees in the pictures are like billboards the pandas use to communicate to one another. Giant pandas rely on a well-developed sense of smell to convey messages. They mark territory and trails, and share mating status using glandular discharge from below their tails as well as urine on the trunks of trees. These scent marks contain hormonal and metabolic products that convey useful information to other pandas. In return, prospective nestles and other pandas can respond by adding scents of their own. These billboard trees, or scent marking trees, are an important place for communication and social interaction between the animals.
Giant Panda drinking habitat
How do giant pandas drink? A photo taken at the Shaanxi Changging National Nature Reserve gives a visual answer. Rainwater collected at the bottom of a saddle-shaped depression, forming a temporary water source for the local wildlife. One of the cameras set in place this spring caught a good deal of activity around the puddle. The rarest picture captured was that of two adult giant pandas at the puddle in the sane, frame. For these solitary creatures, mating season is the only time humans have observed them meeting. Was this a mating pair. We may never Low but the priceless picture remains in our minds.In the southwest jungles where the south China tiger became extinct many years ago, the’ leopard has risen to king of the forest at the top of the food chain. Lithe bodies, sharp senses, and vast strength make the leopard the killer of the forest. They feed on ungulates including wild boar, Chinese muntjak, forest musk deer, tufted deer, and goral, to name a few. The high population of grazers provides essential Support to the leopard population. This photo was taken in the Shaanxi Changging National Nature reserve.