The Firefox! Some say that one common Chinese name for the red panda is “hunho” or the firefox. Others say its not true but the name fits! It looks like a rusty red raccoon/fox mix. They are somewhat related to raccoons and skunks and are not related to bears. They share the same rainy, high-altitude forest habitat of the giant panda, but have a slightly wider range. Red pandas live in the mountains of Bhutan, China, India, Laos and Myanmar and Nepal. They prefer less inhabited areas, which means that most of us will never come across these handsome Asian animals in their natural environment, or what remains of it. And in any case, they would not be particularly easy to find with the hours they keep and up in the trees.
Solitary, active at dawn and dusk, they prefer dark and cool forests. When they speak, they do so with squeaks and whistles.
They eat mostly bamboo (the leaves) but also fruit, insects, mushrooms, roots, grass, nuts, birds, rodents and small mammals.
Red pandas have a dense, soft fur coat to protect them from the cool weather. The fur on top is a reddish-brown while its underside and legs are black. The soles of the paws of the red pandas are covered with white fur. They have compact faces and the borders around the ears are primarily white. They have reddish brown mask-like markings over the eyes. The furry tail has reddish and light brown rings. The mask and ringed-tail are what make them appear similar to raccoons and the bright red color is similar to some foxes.
They spend most of their time in the trees. They can sleep in trees and curl up into balls like cats to stay warm. They are about the same size as a cat except they have much larger heavier heads and big bushy tails. They are an endangered species due to habitat destruction.