Many zoologists studying pandas includeThese animals to the bear family. However, other researchers believe that these cute plush creatures are closer by the kindred relationship to raccoons.
And third researchers identify them in a separate family.
Most supporters of the theory of evolution believeLarge pandas (in a different way a bamboo bear) living fossils that have a kinship with extinct bears agriotries, which are somewhat reminiscent of external features.
Most likely, the ancestor of large pandas, like modern brown or Himalayan bears, was a predator.
The carried out analyzes on morphology, etymology,Anatomy and physiology E. Tennius, an Australian researcher in the field of paleontology, showed that the large panda refers to 16 general features for bears, 5 to raccoons, and 12 differences inherent only in this species. Therefore, most scientists believe that the panda must be classified as a separate family.
Structure of teeth and diet
Most likely, due to the scarcity of the animalFood, large pandas switched to vegetable food, that is, bamboo and a number of other components of the green world. On the rolling type of the menu from the predatory to the vegetarian type, indicates the structure of their teeth, adapted for both grinding bamboo, and for absorbing meat.
So how many teeth does a panda have? Their total number is 40 pieces. Of these, 4 false-rooted teeth located on top of both sides and 2 real molars, and the lower two threes of false-root and real molars, play a special role.
This structure has made it possible for pandas to adapt toSolid plant foods. True, the stomach and intestinal tract of animals, does not fully digest even young bamboo shoots. The digestive system in pandas is much weaker than that of other herbivores. Therefore, large pandas in order not to lose weight, are forced to absorb food all the time, about 15 hours a day.
Today, large pandas are an endangered species, introduced into the international Red Data Book. The reason is the man's mastering of the habitats of pandas.
It is generally accepted that the panda feeds on oneBamboo. This is in truth the main food, but large pandas often replenish their stores of fat and protein not only with plants. The animal also does not exclude and eating small animals, insects, fish that can catch (more often sick or injured), does not disdain and carrion. Sometimes, like bears, ravages the bees' nests. Such a small variety of food and allowed a large panda survive to this day.