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Honghe National nature reserve

Geographical Coordinates
47º 49’ N, 133º 40’ E (47°42′ - 47°52′ N, 133°34′ - 133°46′ E)

Geographical Location
Honghe National Nature Reserve is located at the boundary of Tongjiang City and Fuyuan County

 Area :  21,836 ha

Altitude:  51 m - 55 m; mean - 52 m

Wetland Type
Ramsar classification -   5, 2, 1, W, U, Ts, R, Q, N, M

The main wetland types are seasonal/intermittent freshwater marshes/pools, aquaculture ponds, non-forested peatlands, permanent alkaline lakes, meadows and island forest. Created on January 11, 2002

The Honghe reserve is a flood plain and the terrain is low and flat. There are two main rivers that flow through the Honghe NNR, the Nongjiang River and Wolulan River. The wetlands obtain their water from these rivers and the precipitation. The area has a typical warm temperate monsoon climate. The mean air temperatures vary from -23,4°C to 22,4 °C, and the annual average temperature is 1,9°С. Annual rainfall is 585 mm, 50% - 70% precipitation concentrated between July and September.

Honghe NNR lies in the Sanjiang Plain which contains the largest area of original marsh in China, with many different wetland types. Due to those special natural conditions, the reserve has abundant flora which is a resource of plants. According to statistic, over one thousand plant species are presented in this reserve including
6 endangered rarely wild floral species in China, such as wild soybean (Glycine soja) and Milkvetch root (Astragalus membranaceus). And there are also many commercial tree species- poplar, birch, oak, linden and so on. Other main plant species include Carex lasiocarpa, Carex meyeriana, Phragmites australis and Calamgrostis angustifolia. In addition, 32 mammal species, 235 bird species and 25 fish species are present in this reserve.

A near-natural marsh ecosystem with a large variety of wetland types, providing support for 7 endangered species of mammals and 10 endangered species of avifauna. Endangered faunal species include the red-crowned crane (Grus japonensis) and white-naped crane (Grus vipio), white-tailed sea eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla), red deer (Cervus elaphus) and lynx (Felis lynx) and so on. It is a well-known important breeding site for the endangered Oriental stork (Ciconia boyciana).

The Honghe NNR is state-owned. The surrounding area is under tenure of the local government. Three state-owned farms lie in the surrounding area. Part of the land inside this reserve is being farmed. Most of their land is used for rice paddies. And other main corps to be plant including corns, wheat and soybeans. There are about 20 thousand people living near the reserve. There is one integrated center for research, education and training. The reserve often carry outs public education and  environmental protection activities, such as a program of public education on wetlands and birds for school children. There is no recreation/tourism in the area.

Increased human population pressures have recently led to the agricultural overdevelopment of the Jiansanjiang region, resulting in large changes in Land use and land cover change and a particularly steep decline in swamp areas since 1949. Honghe NNR is protected land by state, but wetland landscape diversity in Honghe and the broader Jiansanjiang region are intimately linked. Honghe NNR is also facing the disappearance and degradation of natural wetland habitats due to increasing human activities in the surrounding area. And wetland areas declined with increasing temperature and decreasing precipitation in the past 20 years.
Honghe NNR overuse of groundwater and intensive agriculture are viewed as potential threats. And illegal fishing is also one potential threat to the reserve ecological system.

Reserve cooperates with other groups such as scientists of universities and international organizations to protect the wetlands. During 1993 to 2014, the reserve has established 183 artificial nests for Oriental storks. In total approximately one thousand Oriental storks were breeding up in this reserve. Biodiversity survey has been done in recently years. And they have also banding birds for many years. Fishing and hunting have been forbidden since 1989. The reserve staff is trying their best to prevent illegal fishing by patrol management. The reserve has often carrying out educational activities for give publicity to the wetland and wildlife protection knowledge