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The Green Gold of China !" ! John MacKinnon and Wang Haibin EU-CHINA BIODIVERSITY PROGRAMME Translated by Lu Hefen and Wang Zanxin !" !" ! !" !"#$%&'() !" !" !

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Foreword for Green Gold of China EU-China Biodiversity Programme publication

Conserving biodiversity is a fundamental part of development. China’s exceptionally high biodiversity makes it even more relevant. Through this beautiful book, we can spread this important message. The EU-China Biodiversity Conservation Programme(ECBP) is the EU’s largest biodiversity programme worldwide. It underlines the EU’s recognition of biodiversity’s importance and of the great economic value of the products and services it provides. Serge Abou,Ambassador European Commission Delegation to China

The book highlights the great beauty and value of Chinese biodiversity. It also tells the story of threats posed

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to biodiversity by China’s rapid development, the measures being taken to protect biodiversity and the specific activities being undertaken by the EU-China Biodiversity Programme. I offer my best wishes to all

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those working on the important task of conserving China’s green gold. I hope the expertise that the EU brings to China in this cooperation will be fruitful and leave a lasting legacy.

!" !"#$%&''( Serge Abou,Ambassador European Commission Delegation to China and Mongolia

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PART ONE - Richness of China!s

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96 Using the power of nature

Biodiversity

!" Table of Contents

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09 Introduction

PART THREE - Review of China!s

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12 Forests

Special Wildlife

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18 Grasslands

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101 Pandas

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22 Deserts

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104 Bears

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28 Mountains

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108 Apes and Monkeys

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38 Fresh water and Wetlands

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108 Golden monkeys

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46 Marine Habitats

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111 Langurs

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52 Diversity of Peoples

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111 Gibbons

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58 Divination with Animal and Plants

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113 Macaques

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114 Elephants

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117 Deer

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120 Wild horses 122 Goat antelopes

PART TWO - Importance of China!s Biodiversity !

61 Benefits derived from ChinaĂ­s biodiversity

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68 Sustainable Harvest

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126 Wild cattle and sheep

72 Service Values

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128 Gazelles and antelopes

76 Hydrological functions

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130 The last big carnivores

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78 Coastal protection

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132 Yangtze specials (alligator, baiji, finless,

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80 Maintaining ecological balance

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porpoise, sturgeon, paddlefish)

136 Pikas and Zokors

86 Tourism and Recreation

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88 Research and Genetic Resources

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140 Pheasants

92 Spiritual Values

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146 Cranes


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152 Waterfowl

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205 Smuggling of hawks and falcons

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278 Reforestation Programmes

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157 Butterflies and moths (crypsis and mimicry)

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207 Tourism

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279 Combating desertification

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164 Dragonflies

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209 Climate change

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280 !Three North! Shelterbed Construction

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168 Laughing thrushes

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282 Restoring wetlands

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170 Some of China!s special plants

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284 Ramsar programme

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170 Magnolias

285 Wildlife protection

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PART FIVE - Saving China!s Biodiverity !

213 Protected Areas

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171 Rhododendrons

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216 World Heritage Programme

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286 CITES

173 Bamboos

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220 Man and Biosphere Reserves

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287 Environmental Impact Assessment and

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175 Sacred plants

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223 Visits to some major nature reserves

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176 Medicinal plants

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180 Antiquity of Chinese Traditional Medicine

PART FOUR -Threats to China!s Biodiversity

Strategic Environmental Assessment

223 Changtang

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288 Preserving Agrobiodiversity

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227 Dongzaigang

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290 Education and Awareness

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231 Maolan

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293 Agencies involved in biodiversity conservation

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235 An introduction to the shy Lake of Kanas

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297 Laws and regulations

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239 Sacred forests of Laojunshan

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299 Public responsibility

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301 EU-China Biodiversity Programme

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185 Challenges

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245 Changbaishan

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187 Pollution, Acid rain, Damming, Communications

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249 Wuyishan

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189 Alien Invasive Species

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253 Jiuzhaigou

303 Recommended Bibliography

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194 Genetically Modified Organisms

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257 Xishuangbanna

304 Acknowledgements

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196 Other New Agricultural practices

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262 Poyang Lake

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198 Bio-prospecting

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267 Wolong

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200 Too many sheep leads to too little water

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272 Other Conservation programmes

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202 Poaching and eating wildlife

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272 Ex situ conservation

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204 The lost Saiga

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277 Logging ban

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! Richness of China!s Biodiversity !" !"#$%&"'(

PART ONE The Richness of China’s Biodiversity

Introduction Like the light shimmering off the scales of a dragon, China reflects many colours. To the yellow banners of its imperial past and the red banners of modern China is added the green banner of environment. Of course China was by nature green-a vast expanse of forested mountains and verdant grasslands. We took green for granted. It was our natural inheritance. But 5 millenia of human development and endeavour have changed the nature of the land forever. If we are to retain any of the original green or if we are to make green once more the degraded deserts and denuded hills, that will be done by human effort. Our new challenge-Green China. China is blessed with a diversity of ecosystems, habitats and living species second to none. Whether we use this wealth wisely or whether we let it slip through our fingers is in our own hands. This ‘greenness’ of China is very precious. It is gold. Its value is counted in economic benefits, ecological services, human health and living standards as well as spiritual well-being. As a consequence of the vast size, varying nature and complex geological history of China, a very wide range of habitat types and very large numbers of species are represented-from the high peaks of the Himalayas to the depths of the Turpan basin; from the deserts, steppes and meadows to a range of forest types, wetlands, coasts and coral reefs. Approximately 35,000 species of higher plants belonging to 353 families and 3,184 genera (of which 190 are endemic) occur here. China contains the richest temperate regions in the world and ranks globally as one of the richest countries in terms of overall plant diversity. The country is also recognised as one of the world’s ten ‘mega-diversity’ countries on account of its rich vertebrate and other zoological wealth. China has about 11.5% of the world mammal species, 13.5 % of the world bird species, 6.7 % of world reptile species and 6.8% of the world amphibian species. The Chinese fauna is also characterized by high levels of endemism or creatures found nowhere else in the world.

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