Pandas are popular attractions at any zoo fortunate enough to have one. What you may not know is that every cuddly, adorable panda you have ever seen in a zoo is actually the property of the nation of China.
Beginning in 1984, the Chinese government began the practice of leasing pandas, instead of selling or giving them away. China’s Wildlife Conservation Association leases pandas for $1 million per year for a ten-year period. The term of the lease may be renewed, at China’s discretion. A further condition of the lease specifies that any cubs born to a leased panda are also considered Chinese property and must be returned to China.
Although quite a few pandas were given to zoos prior to 1984, all of the ones currently in captivity were born since the change in the government’s policy. That means there are no pandas in captivity that do not belong to China.
Read more fun facts about animals.
Read more fun facts about China.