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Over 90% of Chongqing's Endangered Wildlife Are Under Protection

By RAN ZHENGICHONGQING|Sep 09,2022

Chongqing- A few Francois’ leaf monkeys licked the water on the cliff, and baby monkeys hid in their mother’s arms, basking in the sun. Recently, this picture was captured by an infrared camera in the Jinfo Mountain Nature Reserve in Nanchuan District.

In recent years, Chongqing’s efforts to protect biodiversity have paid off. The number of Francois’ leaf monkeys has increased from over 70 in the early 1990s to over 150.

Francois' leaf monkeys in the Jinfo Mountain Nature Reserve, Nanchuan District, Chongqing

Francois’ leaf monkeys in the Jinfo Mountain Nature Reserve, Nanchuan District, Chongqing. (iChongqing file photo)

218 nature reserves, three world natural heritage sites

According to the Chongqing Forestry Bureau, after years of dedication, Chongqing has established 218 nature reserves, including three world natural heritage sites, covering about 15.4% of its total area. Over 90% of Chongqing’s rare and endangered wildlife and subtropical evergreen broad-leaved forest ecosystems have been successfully protected.

In Chongqing, however, most nature reserves are distributed in blocks due to geography and human activities. For example, in addition to the Jinfo Mountain Nature Reserve, the neighboring Wulong Furong River also has traces of Francois’ leaf monkeys. But monkeys of the two places live independently.

“The living areas of the populations become isolated islands,” said Wang Gang, director of the Chongqing Wildlife Conservation Association. “The lack of genetic exchanges will affect the development of animal populations.”

New species discovered in Chongqing Wulipo National Nature Reserve Area

New species discovered in Chongqing Wulipo National Nature Reserve Area. (iChongqing file photo)

Therefore, Chongqing has recently coordinated trans-provincial and trans-regional nature reserves. The Chongqing Wulipo National Nature Reserve Area successfully applied for the World Heritage Site last year. It allied with the adjacent Shennongjia and Badong Nature Reserves, effectively connecting the Daba Mountain species corridor.

Harmonious coexistence between man and nature

Chongqing has built an integrated monitoring system through new technologies, including big data, the Internet of Things, and satellite remote sensing.

With cutting-edge technologies, such as field infrared capture cameras, ecological environment monitoring systems, and intelligent bayonet mounts, regulators can better understand the ecological background of wild animals and plants and supervise human activities.

In recent years, Chongqing has developed forest health care and promoted the harmonious coexistence of man and nature.

Simian Mountain has become a summer resort for citizens in the midsummer, with the highest altitude of 1709 meters and a forest coverage rate of 96%. The development of health tourism and the ecological industry have increased the villagers’ income in Simian Mountain.

Researchers measure silver fir seedlings transplanted into the wild

Researchers measure silver fir seedlings transplanted into the wild. (iChongqing file photo)

The Jinfo Mountain National Nature Reserve is a precious biological species gene bank and natural botanical garden. With 4967 kinds of identified Chinese herbal medicine resources, it is also called the “Chinese Medicine Depot.” Chinese herbal medicine is considered a strategic emerging industry by Nanchuan. The industry expects to generate a total of 30 billion yuan by 2025.

Additionally, with the popularity of study tours, urbanites are more inclined to explore nature. Many nature reserves have become destinations for nature-themed study tours.

(Zhu Qinzhuo, as an intern, also contributed to this report.)

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