Green Development

Population in the wild continues to rise

Updated: Oct 20, 2023 By Yan Dongjie China Daily Print
Share - WeChat
An artificially bred alligator is held in a box before being released into the wild. YAN DONGJIE/CHINA DAILY

This year, 200 Chinese alligators that were bred and raised at the Anhui Chinese Alligator National Nature Reserve in Anhui province were released into the wild.

The release has raised the number of the animals living in the wild in the province to more than 1,600.

The Chinese alligator is a unique, rare species that is only found in China. It is classified as a first-class key protected wild animal by the State.

In order to expand the wild alligator population and change its "critically endangered" status, the Chinese Alligator Conservation and Reintroduction Project was approved by the National Forestry Bureau in November 2001. It is one of 15 key rescue projects for wild animals and plants in the country.

From 2003 to 2018, Anhui conducted 14 experimental reintroduction programs, releasing 108 artificially bred Chinese alligators into the wild. In 2019, a scaled reintroduction plan was launched to release 1,500 alligators over a five-year period, based on a systematic summary of previous experimental reintroduction trials.

From 2019 to last year, 1,300 artificially bred alligators were released.

According to data from recent field surveys, the number of Chinese alligators in the wild is still rising, their distribution range is expanding and their population structure is better balanced. The majority of those released have adapted to the wild environment and reproduced naturally.

Last year, a field survey conducted before that year's batch was released found 698 Chinese alligators, while 26 nests with 602 eggs were discovered, resulting in 372 juveniles hatching.

According to data from this year's most recent survey, the number of Chinese alligators in the wild was approximately 1,200 by May. In August, after this year's batch was released, the number was estimated to be 1,400.

The reserve in Anhui is home to more than 10,000 of the animals. The staff members ensure that they get enough food, have a comfortable living area and a safe environment in which to reproduce.

1 2 >

Copyright©2024 China Daily. All rights reserved.


京公网安 京公网安备 11010502032503号