Pandas are iconic, cute and cuddly looking; but don’t be deceived. They are bears, and true to the nature of bears, they don’t like being cuddled by us. But there is still something endearing about them as they playfully engage with each other. Photographer Steve Bloom visited them in China’s Wolong Reserve, home to the world’s most successful panda breeding centre, and photographed them in the winter snow.
“The reserve has large areas where the pandas can roam freely and I photographed them with incredible natural mountainous backdrops. I felt that winter was the best time to go because I liked the idea of the white snow with the black and white pandas. The Chinese authorities gave me permission to work closely with them, but I am always mindful that when photographing animals, you must show them a huge amount of respect.”