Chinese officials on Wednesday announced that giant pandas are no longer endangered after their population in the wild has increased to 1,800 following decades of efforts to preserve the species.
With its larger population, the species will be re-classified as vulnerable, Cui Shuhong, director of the Department of Natural Ecological Protection of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, said during a press conference, according to CNN.
For nearly half a century, China has made efforts to increase the giant panda population by creating several reserves in mountain ranges across the country.
The species was removed from the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s endangered list in 2016, but Chinese officials reportedly did not agree with the decision at the time.
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