Being a panda caretaker could be the most enviable and fun-filled job while earning 32.000 USD for a year.
Have you heard about the best job in the world? It’s in China, being a panda caretaker at the China Giant Panda Protection and Research Center in Ya’an. According to China Daily, those who wish to partake in this amazing opportunity which pays about $32,000 per year, plus meals, board and the use of an SUV should be 22 years old or older, and have writing and photography skills as well as “some basic knowledge of pandas.”
Unfortunately, it’s kind of depressing: Generous estimates show fewer than 2,500 giant pandas in the wild, and the International Union for Conservation of Nature says that population is going down, partly as a result of habitat loss, and partly because of restricted bamboo supplies. (Pandas are technically carnivores, but they eat mainly bamboo again, problematic since bamboo does not provide much nutrition, which is why pandas have to spend about half their day eating.)
Will the panda nanny’s tasks include the production and/or dissemination of panda porn which is a real thing, given to sexually reluctant pandas who need some encouragement to propagate the species or the professional wearing of panda costumes?
One of the purposes of this panda nanny program, China Daily reports, is to increase awareness of and interest in pandas. We’re aware! And interested! But, of course, not all of us can actually become panda nannies. Believe it or not, there are some apostates who probably won’t think being a panda caretaker is the best job in the world; some people question the value of panda breeding programs at all, arguing that giant pandas aren’t worth saving.