A rare red panda became a surprise house guest just before Christmas for one family in the Chinese city of Leshan. The red panda turned up at the home of a Chinese family in the suburbs of Leshan, a city located in southwest China's Sichuan Province, last week.
"We were having a meal outside our home and saw it climbing down the slope toward us. We approached it slowly, leaving the door of our house open, and then the red panda suddenly rushed inside," said the homeowner.
The creature, native to the Himalayas, soon became a draw in the local neighbourhood as food and warmth encouraged the wild animal to stay put. Neighbours arrived to have their pictures taken with the rare panda, which is classed as an endangered species.
With an estimated population of less than 10,000, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has classified the red panda as "vulnerable" due to the destruction of its habitat. After a short stay the panda was released back into the wild by local authorities.