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Xianghai reserve

Geographical Coordinates
45°02’ N 122°41’ E

Geographical Location
The reserve is located 67 km north-west of Tongyu County, Jilin Province.

Area: 105,467 ha

Altitude: 156 m—192 m

Wetland Type
Ramsar classification -  6, W, Tp, N

Overview
The site is an alluvial geomorphic wetland, typical of the region due to the mixture of rivers and lakes in the eastern part of China.
Created on March 31, 1992.

PHYSICAL FEATURES
Hydrology 
The Reserve have three rivers, the Huolin River flows through east to west, the Emutai River flows into wetland , the Taoer River is introduce from north to injection Reservoir. Many lakes and large areas of reed and marsh wetland have been formed due to flooding of the rivers. In 1971, a dam was built to form Xianghai and Xinglong reservoirs. The main source was the Taoer River. The depth of the reservoirs is 1,5—10 m, with high silt content. The water of the lakes and marshlands is clear without any industrial pollution. The area of the catchment is 12,441 ha. There are no heavy flood impacts on the lower reaches of the river.
Climate
The climate is continental monsoon in the north, with a temperate and semi-arid zone. The annual mean temperature is about 5,1°С, with a maximum of 37°С and minimum of -32°С, with a frost free period of about 150 days and precipitation of 400—500 mm, concentrated in July and August. The average annual evaporation is 1945 mm; The average annual sunshine hours 2,876 hours. Annual prevailing southwest wind which speed generally 5 - 6 level, and the maximum wind speed could up
to level 11.

ECOLOGICAL FEATURES
Sand dunes, grasslands, swamps and lakes cross distribute in the Reserve, making up diversity wetland landscape. The area is rich in animal and plant resources. The plant species reached 595. The sand dunes interspersed between the lakes and marshes are covered with elm forest. There is a high diversity of aquatic plants, with the algae providing abundant food for fish. Fish species reached 29. In addition, 37 mammal species, 8 reptile species and 5 amphibian species are present in this site. The
large area of reed marshland provides an excellent habitat for waterbirds. There are 297 bird species in the reserve including large numbers of endangered species. The site regularly supports over 20,000 waterbirds.

NOTEWORTHY FAUNA
The area is important for breeding, wintering and staging waterbirds. There are 52 national protected species recorded in the reserve. For example, red-crowned crane (Grus japonensis), Siberian crane (Grus Leucogeranus), Oriental stork (Ciconia boyciana), great bustard (Otis tarda dybowskii), demoiselle crane (Anthropoides virgo), common crane (Grus grus), black-faced spoonbill (Platalea minor), whooper swan (Cygnus Cygnus), mandarin duck (Aix galerculata) etc. In total of 235 species of wild
animal have commercial and research values.

HUMAN USE
The site is owned by the state and collectives. The local economy traditionally depends on fishing and reed collection. About 15,000 permanent inhabitants cultivate various crops, raise livestock and cut reeds. The mainly plants are corns and soybeans. Rich meadows and pastureland are used by the local population for cattle grazing. It is also a popular tourism area, especially for birdwatching. In addition, the reserve also built natural museum for education and publicity.

THREATENING AND DISTURBING FACTORS
The main threat to this site is drought, the water resources were declining to 22 million cubic waters in 2004 from 321 million in the late 90s. Even though they had recharged of 100 million cubic of water from Chaersen Reservoir in 2004, they also faced the wetland dry up situation in 2010. Overfishing, land reclamation, grazing, engineering construction, cutting reeds or trees, and increased human disturbance are also present some level of threat to the site.

CONSERVATION MEASURES
Nature Reserve plays an important role in the protection of rare wild animals and plants resources. Public awareness activities have Nature Reserve plays an important role in the protection of rare wild animals and plants resources. Public awareness activities have been conducted, such as “Bird-Loving Week”, Strengthen local residents and school students’ awareness of ecological civilization. The wetlands in this site are now under strict protection, polices deal with many illegal cases such as illegal fishing every year. Conservation measures proposed in 1997 include a limit on largescale production and exploitation activities in the reserve, a reduction of human disturbance in the bird breeding area in the core zone. Bird biodiversity survey has been done in recently years. There is a captive breeding centre for cranes. For example, they have successfully artificial hatched 36 red-crowned cranes in 2015.