Michigan State University contributed these images to Live Science's Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.

While pandas have been intensively observed for at least three decades, some of the most prominent beliefs about the animals are more conventional wisdom than actual fact. Re-analyzing data from a wealth of panda studies, Michigan State University researchers now show pandas are more comfortable in a range of habitats than conservationists have feared, meaning even restored forests could soon welcome pandas back. Read more about the research in "Tao of Pandas: Sometimes They Go With the Flow" and see images from some of the studies below.

 

One subject of study

A panda wearing a GPS collar captured in a camera trap in Wolong Nature Reserve. (Credit: Sue Nichols, Michigan State University.)


Practice, practice, practice

A baby panda practices climbing in the Wolong Nature Reserve. (Credit: Sue Nichols, Michigan State University.)


Learning a useful skill

Pandas learn to forage in their enclosures at the Wolong Nature Reserve. (Credit: Sue Nichols, Michigan State University.)


Snoozing

A napping panda at the Wolong National Nature Reserve in southwestern China. (Credit: Kurt Stepnitz, Michigan State University.)


Chowing down

A panda feeds on bamboo at the Wolong National Nature Reserve in southwestern China. (Credit: Kurt Stepnitz, Michigan State University.)


Pushing it

This panda at the Wolong National Nature Reserve in southwestern China looks ready for a workout. (Credit: Kurt Stepnitz, Michigan State University.)


Video of a munching panda in Wolong. (Credit: Sue Nichols, Michigan State University.)

Follow all of the Expert Voices issues and debates — and become part of the discussion — on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher. This version of the article was originally published on Live Science.