Journal of Resources and Ecology ›› 2018, Vol. 9 ›› Issue (5): 566-574.DOI: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.014

• Investigation and Monitoring of Biological Resources • Previous Articles    

Biodiversity Assessment of Mammal and Bird Species from Camera Trap Data in Yanchiwan National Nature Reserve, Gansu Province, China

ZHANG Chengcheng1, WANG Jun1,2, Justine Shanti ALEXANDER3, DOU Zhigang4, WU Liji4, DONG Wantao4, Dabuxilite4, YANG Jucai4, SHI Kun1,5,*   

  1. 1. The Wildlife Institute, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing 100083, China;
    2. Faculty of Science and Engineering, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester M1 5GD, UK;
    3. Snow Leopard Trust, Sunnyside Avenue, Seattle 98103, USA;
    4. Administration of Yanchiwan National Nature Reserve, Jiuquan, Gansu 736399, China;
    5. Eco-Bridge Continental, Beijing 100083, China
  • Received:2018-03-27 Revised:2018-06-02 Online:2018-09-30 Published:2018-09-30
  • Contact: * SHI Kun, E-mail:
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China (31470567)

Abstract: Camera traps serve as an important tool for monitoring species diversity. We used data from camera traps set for capturing snow leopards (Panthera uncia) in the Yanchiwan National Nature Reserve, Gansu Province, China, to assess species richness with respect to mammal and birds species. We also assessed survey efficiency for species detection, and conducted an initial analysis of species interactions. The survey effort of 10, 171 camera workdays yielded 2, 868 suitable animal image events involving 17 mammal and 20 bird species. Among these, the dhole (Cuon alpinus) is considered to be Endangered, the snow leopard and white-lipped deer (Cervus albirostris) Vulnerable, and the Pallas’s cat (Feli smanul), mountain weasel (Mustela altaica), Himalayan griffon (Gyps himalayensis) and cinereous vulture (Aegypius monachus) Near Threatened under the IUCN red list. Fourteen species were also listed as key protected wild animals according to China national standards. Both the rarefaction curves and richness estimators suggested our sampling for mammal and pheasant species is sufficient, while more survey efforts are still needed to detect other bird species. With a focus on the dominant species Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx), occupancy models were used to estimate site use and detection probability for selected species, and to investigate predator-prey relationships between lynx on the one hand and woolly hare (Lepus oiostolus), pika (Ochotona spp.) and Tibetan partridge (Perdix hodgsoniae) on the other. We give recommendations on how to increase efficiency in camera-based species inventory and biodiversity monitoring.

Key words: camera trap, occupancy modeling, species inventory, species rarefaction curves, species richness