Why do giant pandas only eat bamboo?

How did its skillful grasping bamboo "stunt" originate and evolve?

These issues are not only of concern to the academic community, but also of the public.

  Wang Xiaoming, a visiting researcher at the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences (Institute of Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences), a researcher at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles, USA, Deng Tao, a researcher at the Institute of Paleo-Spine, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and Ji Xueping, a researcher at the Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, cooperated with scientific colleagues. Research on the key fossils of the Pseudo-thumb (also known as the sixth finger) and molar teeth collected from the Late Miocene (about 7 million to 6 million years ago) site in Zhaotong Shuitangba, Yunnan found that the Panda has a The earliest enlarged radial sesamoid has formed the "thumb" function of the opposite grip.

Their research shows that the giant panda's habit of eating bamboo exclusively has originated at least 6 million years ago.

  This important palaeontological research paper was published online on the night of June 30th, Beijing time, in the international academic journal "Scientific Reports", providing important fossil evidence for the evolution of the Elephant Panda-giant panda lineage earlier than the Late Pleistocene, and also for answering the question of Elephant Panda. Whether it has started to eat bamboo and whether the pseudo-thumb can help pandas grasp the bamboo poles provides key evidence.

  On the day of the paper's publication, researcher Deng Tao, the co-author of the paper, accepted an exclusive interview with a reporter from China News Agency in Beijing, interpreting the research results on behalf of the cooperative team's popular science, and revealing the ins and outs of the evolution of the giant panda's "stunt" of eating bamboo.

(Reporter Sun Zifa produced Wu Rui)

Responsible editor: [Liu Xian]