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Zheng W.,Sichuan University | Ran J.,Sichuan University | Li B.,Sichuan University | Gu X.,Sichuan Wildlife Conservation Station | And 2 more authors.
Acta Theriologica Sinica | Year: 2012

The Wenchuan earthquake of May 12, 2008 occurred in the Minshan and Qionglai Mountains, where the most important habitats for giant pandas(Ailuropoda melanoleuca)occur. We took advantage of our long-term dataset on panda habitat use in Longxi-Hongkou and Tangjiahe Nature Reserves to investigate pandas' responses to this disaster. We analyzed the habitat use patterns of giant pandas over the course of a 7-year period (5 years pre-earthquake and 2 years post-earthquake) along fixed-width line transects. The results showed: (1) Before the earthquake, there were no significant differences in used/unused frequencies each year for each transect line, in other words, the habitat use patterns of giant pandas were stable before the earthquake. (2) During the 2 years after the earthquake, there were also no significant differences in used/unused frequencies each year for each transect line. (3) Panda habitat use patterns did not appear to be affected by the earthquake since in the 10 transects surveyed before and after the earthquake, the used/unused frequencies were not significantly different between the pre-and post-earthquake periods. (4)There was no relationship between giant panda habitat use and landslides in Longxi-Hongkou Nature Reserve. Our findings contribute to ongoing habitat restoration plans and long-term conservation of the giant panda.


Zheng W.,Sichuan University | Xu Y.,Sichuan University | Liao L.,Sichuan University | Yang X.,Sichuan Wildlife Conservation Station | And 3 more authors.
Biological Conservation | Year: 2012

The Wenchuan earthquake of May 2008 was a severe natural disaster that caused significant damage to the habitat of the endangered giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) inhabiting southwestern China. However, the effect of the earthquake on giant pandas is understudied. We took advantage of our long-term dataset on panda habitat use in the Minshan Mountains to investigate panda response to this disaster. We analyzed the habitat use patterns of giant pandas over the course of a 6-year period (5. years pre-earthquake and 1. year post-earthquake) along fixed-width line transects. We found that the habitat use patterns of giant pandas were stable before the earthquake and there was no obvious change after the earthquake (despite habitat loss that occurred). We argue that the Wenchuan earthquake does not appear to have been a significant threat for the giant panda. Our findings contribute to ongoing habitat restoration plans and long-term conservation of the giant panda. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.


Mu H.,China West Normal University | Cao S.,China West Normal University | Gu X.,Sichuan Wildlife Conservation Station | Zhang M.,China West Normal University | And 2 more authors.
Acta Theriologica Sinica | Year: 2012

We conducted a field survey on the sympatric Apodemus draco and Niviventer confucianus in 2008 in Fengtongzhai Nature Reserve, China to examine the annual diet composition of small rodents and its effects on their intestinal lengths. The results indicated that, for both rodents, seed was the primary component on their annual diet, and that their diet composition varied significantly across seasons. Of the four categories of diet components, percent of seed ingested had a significant positive influence upon the length of the small intestine, and the influence of the remaining diet components varied depending on the species. We believe that the difference of diet composition for the two species across seasons was likely related to the availability of food resource in the reserve, and the change of digestive tract length perhaps play an important role in the adaptation to seasonal energy demand and food resources. Therefore, possible interspecific difference should be considered when investigating physiological strategies adaptive to different types of food resources for different species in future research.

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