A panda took exception to a man coming into his enclosure in Nanching City, China, and pounced on him, dragging him to the ground. The man jumped the panda's pen to impress his female friends who had accompanied him to the zoo in Jiangxi Province.

He was caught on camera creeping up on the dozing adult male giant panda, Mei Ling. The 120kg (19 stone) animal was startled from sleep and grabbed on to the man's leg. Unable to break free of the 12-year-old panda's grip, the man was then wrestled to the ground and Mei Ling proceeded to sit on top of him.

Attempts to make friends with the panda by stroking his back proved unsuccessful. Eventually, he managed to break free of the panda's grip by using a wrestling-style manoeuvre so that he was on top of the panda. He then ran for the exit.

"The young man left the zoo right after he escaped, and we could not get in touch with him," Kuang Huaming, from Nanchang Zoo, said.

"According to witnesses, his trousers were torn a little by the panda, but the man should be OK.

"We also arranged medical checks for the panda and told the breeders to closely observe its condition. So far the panda is fine."

Giant pandas are not normally known for their ferocity towards humans, although there have been incidents where the animals can turn vicious. Although giant pandas have a mostly vegetarian diet (bamboo makes up 99% of their diet), they do eat meat if it is available. In 2015, a man lost his leg after being savaged by a wild panda near Longnan City in China.

"When the giant panda sunk its teeth into my leg, the pain was indescribable. Blood was everywhere," said Guna Quanzhi according to the People's Daily. Quanzhi has had eight operations and had his leg amputated.