Pandas are actually pretty gregarious, study finds

Giant pandas, thought to be hermits of the animal kingdom, are actually quite social, according to a study published in the Journal of Mammalogy.

A team of researchers from University of Michigan put GPS collars on five giant pandas from the Wolong Nature Reserve in China. The pandas Pan Pan, Mei Mei, Zhong Zhon, Long Long, and Chuan Chuan were captured, given the collars and released back into the wild where their movements were logged every four hours for two years, from 2010 to 2012.

Pandas were previously thought to be solitary animals, but the GPS trackers found that the three female pandas Pan Pan, Mei Mei, and Long Long spend long periods of time together throughout the year. The male panda Chuan Chuan traveled longer distances but frequently returned the group of female pandas, even outside of the spring mating season. READ MORE.