My recent imaginary watercolor safari adventure took a detour to cruise across the Indian ocean to the bamboo forests of China to visit the beautiful endangered giant pandas. After all, only about 1,600 live in the wild, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (with another hundred or so living in zoos around the world.) Definitely worth the 8,000+ mile trip – wouldn’t you say?
Today, I present Percy the Panda.
Percy LOVES bamboo. In fact, he munches on it about 12 hours a day. As much as he loves bamboo, however, it is sadly low in nutrients, so he also feasts on protein-rich rodents, fish, insects and birds.
Percy, like most giant pandas, is a loner. Apparently, giant pandas dislike being around other pandas so much, they have a heightened sense of smell that lets them know when another panda is nearby so it can be avoided. And, if another panda gets too close, the two will end up swatting and growling or biting each other. The only time pandas seek each other out is during mating season.
On average, a giant panda’s territory is about 1.9 square miles (5 square kilometers). To mark their territory, giant pandas secrete a waxy scent marker. Other giant pandas are able to discern the sex, age, reproductive condition, and social status from this scent marker. Must be some smell!
I was itching to play with some tubes of Daniel Smith Primatek pigments I acquired a while back that are made from natural minerals and semi-precious gemstones, and have amazing granulating effects. Percy is made from genuine Hematite, Mayan Blue, Jadeite, and a touch of Quinacridone Rose.
I really enjoyed “visiting” with Percy and learning more about him and his friends.
Where will this adventure lead next? Your guess is as good as mine!
Cheers & Hugs,
Giant Panda facts from: http://www.livescience.com/27335-giant-pandas.html