Journal of Resources and Ecology ›› 2012, Vol. 3 ›› Issue (4): 316-323.DOI: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2012.04.004

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Wuliangsuhai Wetlands: A Critical Habitat for Migratory Water Birds

ZHANG Yamian, JIA Yifei, JIAO Shengwu, ZENG Qing, FENG Duoduo, GUO Yumin, LEI Guangchun   

  1. School of Nature Conservation, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing 100083, China
  • Received:2012-10-10 Revised:2012-11-15 Online:2012-12-30 Published:2012-12-29
  • Supported by:

    National Science and Technology Support Program (2008BADB0B02).

Abstract: Wuliangsuhai wetland is one of the representative wetlands in arid-semiarid region. It is also a key breeding site as well as a stepping site for both East Asia-Australasia Flyway and Central Asia Flyway. From 2009 to 2012, surveys on migratory water birds and their habitat were carried out by using transects census and spot count methods. The surveys recorded more than 100 000 water birds, and 98 species were identified, which belong to 6 orders and 14 families. Among the 98 species, 55 are summer residents (breeding here) and 39 are travelers (only stay here shortly), which account for 56.12% and 39.80% of the total recorded bird species respectively. Further analysis on their migration pattern shows that spring migration is mainly from early March to mid May, which is shorter than autumn migration season (from early August to mid November). Most of the summer residents breed from early April to late May. High concentration of key protected species were observed from early April to early May and from early September to early November. The bird community structure is relatively stable in summer, but much more dynamic during the migration seasons (spring and autumn). Based on the study, recommendation to nominate Wuliangsuhai wetlands as Ramsar site, and flyway network site were put forward. Habitat management that address to the environmental determinants on bird distribution was also discussed.

Key words: Wuliangsuhai, water bird, migration pattern, flyway, wetland management