In what is being hailed as a huge win for conservationists (and pandas), The World Wildlife Federation (WWF) has just removed the Giant Panda from their list of endangered species. That doesn’t mean you can head out for a fun afternoon of panda hunting or anything like that. in fact, they are still on the WWF red list, categorizing them as “vulnerable, ” however, there are now said to be 2,060 of the adorable mammals living in the wild, up 17% from when they first became protected. That’s a massive change from 2009, when officials announced that we could expect to see the species go extinct within a couple of generations.

Among the things helping the pandas grow in numbers, is that China has created 67 preserves for the animals and have made a concerted effort to protect existing forests as well as focus on reforestation of natural panda habitat.

In a press statement on the announcement, the WWF Director General, said, “The recovery of the panda shows that when science, political will, and engagement of local communities come together, we can save wildlife and also improve biodiversity.”

Source: Inhabitat