Do Giant Pandas Live in Japan? (Yes – Here’s Why)


Giant pandas habitats are normally made up of trees. Most importantly, there must be lots of bamboo forests around. 

However, there are other countries aside from China with bamboo forests around. Possibly, they could be homes of giant pandas too. 

Looking at countries that are similar to China, I wonder – Do giant pandas live in Japan?

Yes, giant pandas live in Japan. However, in Japan, they only live in captivity and not freely in the wild. Japan isn’t the natural home of giant pandas. 

All giant pandas in the world are native to China only. There you’ll find most pandas living freely in the wild and just a few of them in captivity.

Also, these giant pandas live there but they aren’t owned by Japan at all. However, till date, only one panda, Ling Ling, was directly owned by Japan. 

Interestingly, this panda was still a native from china. The others live in Japan under loan from China.

Ling Ling - Only Panda Japan Owns
CTRO: flickr.com

Having known that giant pandas also live in Japan, you might be wondering about the areas they live in. 

And since they don’t stay in the wild in Japan, where else do they stay? Come to think of it – where can I find pandas in Japan?

Let’s dive deeper into this article to know more about this…

Where Can I Find Pandas in Japan?

You can find giant pandas at Ueno zoo in Tokyo, Japan. This zoo is known to be the oldest zoo in Japan and the largest one in Tokyo.

Interestingly, they are popular with giant pandas and they have managed to raise 13 of them.

Also, these cute creatures have made this zoo a place many people visit.

As giant pandas are kept in this zoo, they’re safe from the threats they could face in the wild. Since they are at risk of extinction, there’s a need to protect them.

In addition, these zoos also participate in conservation measures to help grow the panda population. However, they don’t own them legally.

In fact, the newborns are still the property of the Chinese government.

With Japan included, you’ll find giant pandas in zoos of 13 countries which are not natural homes of giant pandas. 

Recommended Reading: What Zoos Have Giant Pandas?

Are There Pandas on Mount Fuji?

Mount Fuji, Japan - Not a Place Giant Pandas Live

No, there are no giant pandas on Mount Fuji. However, this mountain is very popular and the largest mountain in Japan. 

Also, below the mountain is a well known “Mount Fuji safari park”. In this park you’ll see zoo areas with lots of animals including the red panda.

You’ll even find foxes and bears living around this mountain, but not giant pandas. 

Why Do Japanese People Love Pandas?   

Giant pandas were already popular in some other countries, like the UK, France, US, etc. before they came to Japan later on after many years.

Interestingly, the people of Japan seem to love these cute creatures more than the way people adore them in other places. But why is this so?!

Unlike most western countries, like America, who prefer cool things, Japan has a love for anything so cute. However, to Japanese people, anything really cute is cool — people, animals or even things. 

This love of cuteness comes from their “Kawaii” culture. Anything cute, kind, soft and child-like interests them so much.

And for pandas, this isn’t an exception as you’ll see all these things in their lives. They’re indeed cute, clumsy and can be pretty funny trying out things they normally can’t do.

Just hearing about some cute creatures (pandas) that were becoming popular in some other countries, the people of Japan wished to have them pretty soon in their country.

At the time these creatures finally came to Japan, at the Ueno zoo, it drew so much crowd!

The Japanese people just wanted to see these cute creatures for themselves. They didn’t mind waiting for hours just to see the giant pandas.

‘Till date, the Japanese people’s love for pandas hasn’t faded. It has made these creatures more popular in Japan than in other parts of the world. 

What’s more interesting is that they use cartoon-like images of pandas around the country. This was a creative way to express their love for giant pandas.

Final Thoughts

In summary, giant pandas live in Japan but only in zoos. Despite the bamboo forests in Japan, it isn’t a natural home for giant pandas.

However, the Ueno zoo in Japan has helped to protect these creatures and grow their population.

Despite Japan isn’t the home of giant pandas, Japanese people still love them more than the way other countries do. Thanks to their cuteness!

If you like to know where giant pandas live,make sure you check out this article

However, if you like this one, do well to share it!