7 Facts About Red Pandas’ Vision (Explained!)

While other animals cannot see infrared, red pandas have the ability to see it to some extent. Does this fact mean that red pandas have good eyesight?

In this article, we’ll be answering the seven top questions that arise regarding the red pandas’ vision.

Now, let’s get started!

Table of Contents

Are Red Pandas Born Blind?

Yes, red pandas are born with their eyes closed like other mammals. This condition makes red pandas practically blind for some days.  

Additionally, red panda cubs’ eyes open within the first few weeks after birth. Their eyes open and develop as they grow. 

When the cubs are three months old, they can see the same way as adults.

Do the Red Pandas Have Good Eyesight?

Yes, red pandas have good vision. Their eyesight has adaptations that help them survive in their habitat.

In addition, red pandas have binocular vision that helps them to judge distances between objects. Excellent eyesight is also important for red pandas as they move through trees.

Furthermore, red pandas’ eyes have rod cells responsible for detecting motion in their environment. Their good eyesight helps them spot predators.

Human Vs. Red Pandas Vision (Comparison)


There are several similarities between humans and red pandas. These similarities include:

  • Both red pandas and humans can see colors in different dimensions. However, humans see color better than red pandas.
  • Both of these mammals can see with both eyes.
  • They both have cones and rods in their retina. These cones and rods are cells responsible for light sensitivity.
  • Both red pandas and humans have a vision that is sensitive to motion.


Even though both red pandas and humans are mammals, they have some differences in their visual perceptions. Here are a few differences:

Color Receptors

Red pandas have dichromatic color vision, meaning they have two color receptors. In contrast, humans have trichromatic color vision, which means they have three color receptors.

Low Light Vision

Red pandas have low-light vision, and humans don’t. Furthermore, red pandas’ eyes have more rod cells and fewer con cells in their retinas.

The high number of rod cells makes red pandas see more clearly in low light. More cone cells in the human eye are responsible for color vision.

Focal Point

Humans can focus on an object better than red pandas. Additionally, humans can change the shape of the lenses to focus. On the other hand, the red pandas have a fixed focusing point.

Giant Pandas Vs. Red Pandas Vision (Comparison)

Giant Panda Vs. Red Panda Vision


Apart from giant pandas and red pandas sharing the same name,” panda,” they have some similarities in vision. Below are a few similarities:

  • Both red pandas and giant pandas can see in the dark. Primarily both red pandas and giant pandas are active at dawn.
  • The red pandas and giant pandas can see using two eyes simultaneously.
  • Both red and giant pandas have limited color vision. The two creatures are only sensitive to some colors.
  • Both red pandas and giant pandas have cones and rods in their eyes. This means they both have a few cones and multiple rod cells in their retinas.
  • Both of these two creatures have vertical eyesight. Vertical vision enables them to adapt to different light conditions.


Below are the main differences between the vision of giant pandas and giant pandas:

Color Vision

Giant pandas can see color to some extent. They can distinguish between shades of gray, black, and white. Additionally, they can differentiate between red and green.

Red pandas, on the other hand, have more advanced color vision and can see various colors.

Night Vision

The layer called tapetum lucidum in the eyes of the red pandas is more reflective than in giant pandas. This means red pandas have a more clear night vision than the giant pandas.

Are Red Pandas Color-Blind?

No, red pandas can see in color. These cat-like animals have dichromatic vision, which means they can see several shades.

What’s more, red pandas have two types of color receptors, making them see shades of green, blue, yellow, and red.

Do Red Pandas Have Night Vision?

Yes, the red pandas can see at night. These mammals’ night vision enables them to find food at the darkest hours at dawn.

Unlike other mammals with round pupils, the red pandas’ eyes have slits as pupils. These slits are responsible for clear vision in dim light. 

Furthermore, this adaptation significantly benefits the red pandas, even to see a predator coming in the dark. Red pandas’ ability to see in the dark is essential for these creatures’ survival.

What Color Is the Red Pandas Eyes?

A Red Panda's Brown Eyes

Red pandas have dark brown eyes. Their eye color may vary depending on genetics, age, or the red pandas’ differences.

However, the color of the red pandas’ eyes is generally brown or with different variations of dark brown. 

Final Thoughts

To sum up, I hope you learned about the seven common things about red pandas’ vision.

That being said, here are a few things to remember:

  • Red pandas are born with their eyes closed, hence being blind for a while.
  • These mammals have good vision
  • Red pandas can see different colors clearly
  • Red pandas can see well at night
  • They have dark brown eyes

Interestingly, red pandas’ vision looks so similar to that of nocturnal animals. 

Could they be nocturnals too? Find out in our article, Are Red Pandas Nocturnal or Diurnal?