Modern Animal
Future Animal
Pygmy Giant Panda
Ailuropoda Microta


Photos from http://news.bbc.co.uk/nol/shared/spl/hi/pop_ups/07/sci_nat_enl_1182184103/img/1.jpg
Photos from http://news.bbc.co.uk/nol/shared/spl/hi/pop_ups/07/sci_nat_enl_1182184103/img/1.jpg
Pygmy Giant Panda appeared two million years ago, it is known as the ancestor's of Giant Panda. Science found one of the Pygmy Giant Panda's skull in a cave in China. It proves that bears is not really Giant Panda Ancestors and extinct long time ago. Although it is 1/3 size of the Giant Pandas now, they share common similarities.

Scientific Classification
Kingdom
Animalia
Phylum
Chordata
Class
Mammalia
Order
Carnivora
Suborder
Caniformia
Family
Ursidae
Genus
Ailuropoda
Species
A. microta
.png


Habitat of Pygmy Giant Panda
It was believed that Pygmy Giant Panda is the earliest know ancestor of the Giant Panda. It can be found in forest regions. They would normally choose to live in forest with a lot of vegetation and tress with supplies of bamboos. Unlike the Giant Panda now, Pygmy Giant Panda is a way smaller before it evolved in to Giant Panda. Similar to the Giant Panda, they spend their time in trees and lives themselves. During summer, the they will go up to higher elevations to cool down themselves and stayed lower elevations during winter to avoid the cold weather, very similar to the giant panda.
Giant_Panda_-_Range_Area.png
Location of the Pyhmy Giant Panda

The Pygmy Giant Panda is one of the most related types to Giant Panda, not only because of their ability to climb the trees, but the place they lived in. Pygmy Giant panda live in places that around China, same places as the Giant Panda now, however it was believed that there are more Pygmy Giant Panda then now because of the modern civilization now that forced the Giant Panda to move up north.

The size of a Pygmy Giant Panda is a way smaller than the Giant Panda now. It is about 1m in length, and the modern Giant Panda is about 1.5m which is 5 ft in length. The fossil range is about in the late Pliocene. It was believed that Pygmy Giant Panda had been evolved which they grew bigger, however their main food resources are the same, bamboo.
habitat of Pygmy Giant Panda : Sources from http://www.paradise-found-in-maui.com/images/hike_maui_bamboo_forest.jpg
habitat of Pygmy Giant Panda : Sources from http://www.paradise-found-in-maui.com/images/hike_maui_bamboo_forest.jpg

Similar to the giant panda, it was believer that Pygmy Giant Panda do not winter sleep during winter. The scientists found out that when the Pygmy Giant Panda who live in the southern limits of range, they do not undergo winter sleep because the weather is pretty hot. They are the same as Giant Panda where they descend to lower elevations during winter. However, scientists believed that Pygmy Giant Panda was not as black and white as the Giant Pandas now.

habitat of pygmy giant panda: Sources from http://www.macfarlane-web.com/images/Bamboo%20Forest.jpg
habitat of pygmy giant panda: Sources from http://www.macfarlane-web.com/images/Bamboo%20Forest.jpg

Structural Adaptation One
Similar skull shape compare to the Giant Panda
Skull and Teeth of Pygmy Giant Panda : Link from http://i.telegraph.co.uk/telegraph/multimedia/archive/00638/news-graphics-2007-_638408a.jpg
Skull and Teeth of Pygmy Giant Panda : Link from http://i.telegraph.co.uk/telegraph/multimedia/archive/00638/news-graphics-2007-_638408a.jpg
Compare to the Giant Panda, Pygmy Giant Panda weight lesser and smaller, it was believed that they have similar teeth as the Giant Panda now. This shows that Pygmy Giant Panda had already adapted to the live style that they do already eat bamboo. However they do live in lower tropical forest then the Giant Panda now. It is because of the pressure of human civilization. The size of the Pygmy Giant Panda’s skull is about one third of the size of the Giant Panda’s skull now. Scientists believed that Pygmy Giant Panda have evolved into the Giant Panda now as Pygmy Giant Panda was first appeared in southern China two million years ago. However their living habitat and life styles didn’t really have a dramatic change.
Scientists believed that Pygmy Giant Panda was a way smaller than Giant Panda is because of the habitat they lived in two million years ago. During that time Plants and animals are smaller and it was believed that bamboo are shorter which shows the fact that Pygmy Giant Panda was not as big as the Giant Panda now, however as the world is changing, they evolved and extinct which became the Giant Panda now.


Structural Adaptation Two

Strong palms and teeth
Despite the size difference between Pygmy Giant Panda and Giant Panda, scientists found out that Pygmy Giant Panda had a heavy wear patterns on its teeth and muscle scares like Gorilla , it suggests that it has a very powerful chewing power, even higher than the Giant Panda now.
The scientists found out that the teeth of the Pygmy Giant Panda’s teeth patterns shows that Pygmy Giant Panda can chew bamboos and others food even harder and faster. The bones that the scientists found also shows the the palms of Pygmy Giant Panda is very similar to the Giant Panda now, however the muscles scar shows that Pygmy Giant Panda contains more power than the Giant Panda now. It was believed that the Pygmy Giant Panda was stronger than the Giant Panda now was because of their size. Pygmy Giant Panda was way smaller than Giant Panda, in order for them to take down bamboos and eat it; they will need lot more power which is the reason why they have a stronger palms and teeth.

Behavioral Adaptation one

Vegetarian
Scientists believed that Pygmy Giant Panda lived in a lower land tropical forest then the Giant Panda now, however, the food they are eating were still the same, bamboos. It was believed that during that time bamboo was on of the most dominant plant types in the lowland tropical forest. They are fully adapted and specialized. This leads them to exploiting the same environment and the food resources for 2 million years. However due to the human civilization, Giant Panda were forced to move up north and the lack of bamboos had made them listed in the endangered list. There are other creatures that lived in the same area with Pygmy Giant Panda too. The Giant extict Stegodon and ape Gigantopithecus. Due to this there are not much predators that could attack the Pygmy Giant Panda, who were all vegetarians like Zebra and Kangaroo .

Behavioral Adaptation two

Hibernate depending on the places they live
Very similar to the Giant Panda, scientists believed that Pygmy Giant Panda hibernate depending on their regions. It is depending on the habitat they lived in and the cold weather in winter. If they are living in colder regions, for example the northern region, they will find a cave to stay in to prevent the snow and the cold weather during November to March. This is the reason why two millions later; scientists were able to discover the skull of Pygmy Giant Panda. During that time they will stay inside and will not come back out. Generally those who live in the northern regions have longer and thicker fur than the other ones who leave in the southern region. In the southern region they will sleep a way less and sometimes they would not hibernate due to the weather and during winter they would go to a lower elevation to find more food and avoid the cold winter. They would adapt the weather as they live in different places depending on the weather. Having the ability to control hibernate could affect their life span as they could live longer and adapt the environment more effectively. However due to the evolved of Pygmy Giant Panda, they have extinct and become the Giant Panda now.

Physiological Adaption One
Big eaters

Pygmy Giant Panda has to eat a lot everyday in order to get enough nutrients, especially winter. They do not hibernate due to the fact that they do not get enough nutrients in order to survive the whole hibernate. Every day they will need to eat about 3500 bamboos. They will sit in the bamboo forest for the whole day just to eat enough bamboos. That is the reason why they will need a strong teeth and palms in order to eat huge amount of food. The environment gave them enough food to eat some they evolved and have stronger teethes and palms in order to eat huge amount of food per day.

Extinction Pressure
The reason why Pygmy Giant Panda had extinct is because of their size. As other animals and meat eaters animals grows, Pygmy Giant Panda become one of the victims and died. Also scientists believed that some Pygmy Giant Panda could not survive the coldness and eventually died. This is the reason why Pygmy Giant Panda had extinct and generally they evolved and become the Giant Panda now with same similarity.

Reference