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World Natural Heritage: Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries

Editor: zhenglimin 丨CCTV.com

07-08-2015 16:39 BJT

Assessment of the World Heritage Committee

The giant panda is China’s national treasure and also the symbol and "flagship" species of global nature conservation. The Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries is the typical region for the research of earth history and geological features, the typical region of terrestrial and marine ecosystems, plant and animal evolution, the concentrated region of natural landscapes and aesthetic landscapes, as well as the global typical representative of biological diversity and endemic species habitats.

Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries

Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries

Chinese name: Si Chuan Da Xiong Mao Qi Xi Di

English name: Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries

Based on the standards C(II)(III)(IV)(VI) for selecting world cultural heritage, the Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries was listed in the World Heritage List.

The Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries is mainly located between the Dadu River and Mount Min, in the Qionglai Mountains between the Chengdu Plains and the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. It is 180 kilometers long from south to north and 40 to 70 kilometers wide from east to west. It contains four cities and prefectures, and 12 counties including Chengdu, Ya’an, Aba and Ganzi. It also includes nine scenic spots and eight nature reserves that cover an area of 9,510 square kilometers. Its core area, covering an area of 5,370 square kilometers, includes the Wolong Nature Reserve, Siguniang Mountain and the Jiajin Mountain of the Qionglai Mountains. More than 30 percent of wild giant pandas currently live in this area and it has become the world’s largest remaining contiguous habitat of the giant panda.

The Wolong Nature Reserve is located in Wenchuan County of Aba Prefecture. It is only about 120 kilometers away from Chengdu’s urban area and more than 50 kilometers away from the Dujiang Weir. The Wolong Nature Reserve is located in the eastern Qionglai Mountains, the mountain and canyon region in the intermediate zone from the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau to the Sichuan Basin. A total of 101 peaks in this area are more than 5,000 meters above sea-level and the highest is Yaomei Peak which stands at 6,250 meters. This area has overlapping peaks and murky fog, as well as lush aboriginal forests, secondary shrubbery, and arrow bamboo forests. As Wulong has a higher terrain and a humid climate, it is very suitable for arrow bamboos and Huaju bamboos to grow, which is the main food of giant pandas. Therefore, it is an ideal region for giant pandas to survive and reproduce. The Hetaoping Giant Panda Breeding Field and the world's only giant panda research center possess six laboratories, and it is a good place to watch and study giant pandas.

Siguniang Mountain belongs to the Qionglai Mountains and its main peak is called Yaomei Peak, and it is 6,240 meters above sea level. Siguniang Mountain is composed of four connecting snow peaks like four beautiful fairies wearing white dresses in the mountains. The four peaks are the 5,355-meter-high Dajie Peak, the 5,454-meter-high Erjie Peak, the 5,664-meter-high Sanjie Peak and the 6,250-meter-high Sijie Peak (Yaomei Peak). In addition, there is also the 5,413-meter-high Pomiao Mountain and the 4,487-meter-high Balang Mountain in this area. The Siguniang Mountain also contains three valleys, namely the Changping valley, the Shuangqiao valley and the Haizi valley.

About 240 wild giant pandas now live on Jiajin Mountain, accounting for about one-fourth of the total population of wild pandas in Sichuan and in China. The Jiajin Mountain area in the city of Ya’an has provided many live giant pandas to the country since 1955, accounting for 46 percent of the total giant pandas called on by the country, and 78 percent of the total number of “country gift” pandas that China has given to foreign countries. It is the world’s largest supplier of wild giant pandas. Jiajin Mountain Giant Panda Sanctuaries is also the type specimens sources of 82 kinds of vertebrates such as giant pandas and golden monkeys, as well as 105 kinds of higher plants such as Chinese dove trees.

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