A red panda from Saskatoon’s Forestry Farm Park and Zoo will soon find a new place to call home.

Zoo manager Tim Sinclair-Smith says the red panda, Phoenix, will be leaving Saskatoon on Sunday, Oct. 1.

“For the past three years, Phoenix has lived with us in the PotashCorp Ark Exhibit and his presence was enjoyed by visitors of all ages,” Sinclair-Smith said in a written release. “Phoenix’s move is part of the Species Survival Plan developed by the (American) Association of Zoos and Aquariums to help ensure the survival of selected species in zoos and aquariums, most of which are threatened or endangered in the wild.”

Sinclair-Smith says the red panda has been classified as endangered because its population has declined to less than 10,000 and has continued to reduce due to habitat loss among other causes.

“We hope that one day red pandas will return to the (Forestry Farm Park and) Zoo, but for now our commitment is to the SSP and the important work it is doing to maintain a healthy, genetically diverse, and stable population for red pandas,” Sinclair-Smith said.

The zoo’s animal care team says it will be on hand to answer questions at the PotashCorp Ark Exhibit throughout the month of September.