Zhalong National Natural Reserve

Qiqihar, China

Zhalong National Natural Reserve

Qiqihar, China

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Zhang S.L.,Northeast Forestry University | Yang S.H.,Northeast Forestry University | Li B.,Northeast Forestry University | Xu Y.C.,Northeast Forestry University | And 3 more authors.
Zoo Biology | Year: 2011

Flight restraint is important for zoos, safaris, and breeding centers for large birds. Currently used techniques for flight restraint include both surgical and non-surgical approaches. Surgical approaches usually cause permanent change to or removal of tendon, patagial membrane, or wing bones, and can cause pain and inflammation. Non-surgical approaches such as clipping or trimming feathers often alter the bird's appearance, and can damage growing blood feathers in fledglings or cause joint stiffness. We observed microstructure of primary feathers of the red-crowned crane (Grus japonensis) and found that the width of barbs is a determinative factor influencing vane stiffness and geometric parameters. We hypothesized that partial longitudinal excision of barbs on the ventral surface of the primary feathers would reduce the stiffness of the vane and render the feathers unable to support the crane's body weight during flight. Furthermore, we hypothesized that this modification of barbs would also change the aerodynamic performance of feathers such that they could not generate sufficient lift and thrust during flapping to enable the bird to fly. We tested this hypothesis on a red-crowned crane that had normal flight capability by excising the ventral margin of barbs on all 10 primaries on the left wing. The bird was unable to take off until the modified feathers were replaced by new ones. Removal of barbs proved to be a simple, non-invasive, low-cost and reversible method for flight restraint. It is potentially applicable to other large birds with similar structural characteristics of primary feathers. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.


Luo J.,Qiqihar University | Ye Y.,Qiqihar University | Gao Z.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve | Wang Y.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve | Wang W.,Qiqihar University
Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology | Year: 2014

Heavy metal enrichment in the prey of redcrowned cranes in Zhalong Wetland, northeastern China was researched. Lead and Cd were the most abundant elements in the sediments; their concentrations ranged from 9.85 to 127 ppm and from 1.23 to 10.6 ppm, respectively. Six aquatic animal taxa contained detectable levels of heavy metals, in the decreasing order of Cyprinidae> Cobitidae> Dytiscidae>Odontobutidae>Viviparidae> Aeshnidae. Metal concentrations in these taxa followed the order: Zn>Cu>Cr>Pb>Hg>Cd. Metals in tissues of the red-Crowned crane varied in the following order: Zn>Cr>Cu>Pb>Cd>Hg in feathers, and Zn>Cu>Hg>Cr>Pb> Cd in eggshells. Cadmium concentrations in the feathers of the red-Crowned crane exceeded a level considered to be potentially toxic in birds (i.e., 0.22 ppm), ranging from 1.42 to 3.06 ppm. © Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014.


Luo J.,Qiqihar University | Ye Y.,Qiqihar University | Gao Z.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve | Wang W.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve
Biologia (Poland) | Year: 2015

The discovery of eight dead red-crowned cranes in Zhalong Wetland, northeastern China, allowed us to examine their digestive tracts for identifiable prey in this study. Stomach content and fecal analyses were used to determine the foraging ecology of this crane species. The stomach content mass of the red-crowned crane carcasses varied according to body size and ranged from 10.62 g to 26.32 g. Grit particles prevailed in the stomach of the birds and accounted for approximately 87% of the mass of the stomach contents by weight (mainly gravel with particle sizes of 2-10 cm). Gizzard contents included plant and aquatic animals, which made up 63% and 37%, respectively, of the weight. Maize, seed, and fish were the most common residues in the gastric content; and zoobenthic debris, seeds, and reed organs were markedly present in the crane feces. The combined use of stomach content and fecal analyses is recommended for future studies on the food habits of this rare bird species. © 2015 Institute of Zoology, Slovak Academy of Sciences.


Luo J.,Qiqihar University | Ye Y.,Qiqihar University | Gao Z.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve | Wang W.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve | Hartup B.K.,International Crane Foundation
Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology | Year: 2016

The dietary uptake of Cd and Pb may contribute to the decline of migratory red-crowned cranes (Grus japonensis) on the Asian mainland. To uncover the relevance of this hypothesis, we determined the concentrations of Pb and Cd as well as further macro and trace elements (Ca, Mg, Cu, Zn, Hg and As) in the gastric contents, gastric wall, intestinal wall, liver, kidney, muscle, and feathers of two individuals found dead in Zhalong Wetland in Northeastern China. Indeed, the Pb concentrations in the liver and kidney tissues was with 31.4 and 60.3 mg kg−1 dry weight (dw), respectively, above concentrations considered as potentially toxic level in common birds (i.e. 30 mg kg−1). These Pb concentration may have possibly been associated with lethal toxicosis in this endangered species suggesting Pb as major threat for G. japonensis populations. Thus, the inputs of Pb into Zhalong Wetland should be reduced to maintain and reestablish environmental conditions supporting the population development of these migratory red-crowned cranes in the Zhalong Wetland, a critical crane habitat for the long-term sustainability of this species. © 2016 Springer Science+Business Media New York


Luo J.,Qiqihar University | Ye Y.,Qiqihar University | Gao Z.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve
Ecological Research | Year: 2015

Arsenic (As) concentration was analyzed in four sediment-inhabiting animals (Pearsonia of Mollusca Gastropoda, Enchytraeus of Annelida Lumbricidae, Cybister japonicus Sharp of Hexapoda Dytiscidae and Chipangopaludina chinensis of Mollusca Gastropoda) from 19 sampling sites and eight carcasses of red-crowned crane (Grus japonensis) to examine As transfer along the typical food chain in Wuyur catchments, northeastern China. Results indicated that As concentration in the prey of the red-crowned cranes was elevated via the food chain. Geo-accumulation indices at all sites were less than 0, which suggests that this region contained background As concentration. The four aquatic animal families containing As were land snail < water snail < beetle < earthworm. The highest As concentration was found in the liver of the red-crowned cranes (145–441 ppb) followed by the kidneys (116–258 ppb) and muscles (36–94 ppb). The eggshells of red-crowned cranes contained relatively high As concentration, which varied from 35 to 235 ppb, whereas the feathers had the lowest concentration, with an average of 25 ppb. The dietary exposure level to As of the red-crowned crane population in Zhalong Wetland, Northeastern China was lower than the As toxicity threshold concentration. This study reported that eggshells are suitable indicators of As risk levels in red-crowned crane. © 2015, The Ecological Society of Japan.


Luo J.,Qiqihar University | Ye Y.,Qiqihar University | Gao Z.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve | Wang Y.,Qiqihar University | Wang W.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve
Environmental Earth Sciences | Year: 2015

Five heavy metal concentrations, copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), lead (Pb), chromium (Cr), and cadmium (Cd), in the sediments and six typical aquatic animal taxa were analyzed to determine the contamination from heavy metals in the habitat of the red-crowned cranes in Northeastern China. The body burden of these metals in the cranes was analyzed to examine the impact of these hazards on the rare species. Results indicated that all detected concentrations of the five heavy metals in the sediments were higher than the natural background levels. Pb and Cd were the most abundant elements in the sediments, with concentrations ranging from 9.85 to 129.72 mg kg−1 and from 1.23 to 10.63 mg kg−1 (dry weight, dw), respectively. Their absolute fractions were relatively stable phases, i.e., bound to iron-manganese oxides fraction and bound to organic matter fraction at 16.28 and 23.23 mg kg−1 for Pb and 0.33 mg kg−1 and 3.15 mg kg−1 (dw) for Cd. Six common water animal taxa were found to contain detectable heavy metal concentrations. The internal tissues of the red-crowned cranes contained significantly high metal concentrations compared with their external tissues (feather, feces and residual eggshell). Cd concentrations in the feather and liver of red-crowned cranes exceeded a level considered to be potentially toxic in birds, with levels ranging from 0.41 to 3.06 mg kg−1 and 0.37 to 4.42 mg kg−1 (dw), respectively. Similarly, we found increased levels of Pb in the both external and internal tissues, with levels ranging from 0.21 to 3.21 mg kg−1 dw, which indicated likely contamination by the metal. © 2014, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.


Luo J.,Qiqihar University | Ye Y.,Qiqihar University | Gao Z.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve | Wang Y.,Qiqihar University | Wang W.,Qiqihar University
Soil and Sediment Contamination | Year: 2016

This study examined Tessier's fractions of Pb, Cd, and As in the sediments and their potential toxic effects on four aquatic animals, i.e., Enchytraeus of Lumbricidae, Cipangopaludina chinensis of Viviparidae, Cybister japonicus Sharp of Dytiscidae, and Perccottus glenii Dybowski of Odontobutidae in Zhalong Wetland, Northeastern China. Results show that Cd poses a high risk to the biota in Zhalong Wetland. The geo-accumulation indices indicate that the region only has background concentrations of As, although it is slightly polluted by Pb and is seriously polluted by Cd. The exchangeable fraction receives minor contributions from these metals: 0.8% for Pb, 2.8% for Cd, and 4% for As. Three reed organs and four aquatic animal groups contain detectable concentrations of Pb, Cd, and As, with the following order of increasing concentrations: stem < rhizome < root < Viviparidae < Odontobutidae < Dytiscidae < Lumbricidae. Relatively low bioaccumulation factor (BAF) of As occurred in four aquatic organisms, whereas significantly higher BAFs of Pb and Cd were found in the earthworm than other aquatic organisms (P < 0.05). The earthworms (Enchytraeus of Lumbricidae) were recommended to be used as a suitable indicator for Pb, Cd, and As toxic risk level in this region. © 2016 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


Luo J.,Qiqihar University | Ye Y.,Qiqihar University | Gao Z.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve | Wang W.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve
Biologia (Poland) | Year: 2016

The concentrations of six elements (Ca, Mg, Zn, Cu, Pb and Cd) in the eggshells of breeding red-crowned cranes (Grus japonensis) in China's Zhalong Wetland were examined. Two macronutrients, namely, Ca and Mg, were predominant in the eggshells, with corresponding concentrations varying from 127 g kg-1to 323 gkg-1and 0.33 g kg-1to 5.51 gkg-1(dry weight, dw), respectively. The Cu and Zn contents were in the range of below the detection limit (ND) to 8.05 mg kg-1and ND to 511 mg kg-1dw, respectively. The maximal Pb and Cd concentrations in the eggshells of the red-crowned crane exceeded a level considered to be potentially toxic in birds (i.e., 1.7 mg kg-1for Pb and 0.34-0.91 mg kg-1dw for Cd), ranging from ND-3.20 mg kg-1dw for Pb and ND-1.20 mg kg-1dw for Cd. The principal components analysis results revealed the complex chemical associations between two essential (Cu and Zn) and nonessential (Pb and Cd) elements in the eggshells of G.japonensis in China. Increased Pb and Cd levels in the bodies and eggshells of the red-crowned cranes suggest this species in their colonies are exposed to these contaminants, although which had not induced to obvious eggshell thinning in the examined species. © 2016 Institute of Botany, Slovak Academy of Sciences 2016.


Luo J.,Qiqihar University | Ye Y.,Qiqihar University | Gao Z.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve | Wang W.,Zhalong National Natural Reserve
Toxicological and Environmental Chemistry | Year: 2014

The concentrations of four essential (Ca, Mg, Zn, and Cu) and two nonessential elements (Pb and Cd) in feathers and kidneys, livers, gut walls, and muscles of eight carcasses of migratory red-crowned cranes (Grus japonensis) from Zhalong Wetland, northeastern China, were examined. The concentrations of Cd in the feathers were between 0.4 mg kg−1 dry weight (dw) and 3.1 mg kg−1 dw, in the livers between 0.4 and 4.4 mg kg−1 dw, the maximum of which exceeded a level considered to be environmental exposure risk (i.e., 3 mg kg−1 dw in the liver or kidney). High Pb levels (0.4–3.2 mg kg−1 dw, with an average of 1.8 mg kg−1) were also detected in livers, which exceeded a level considered toxicosis in birds (1.7 mg kg−1 dw). Pb and Cd had the highest scores in principal component analysis. Relatively high Pb and Cd concentrations in the migratory cranes were thought to be associated with their habitat and prey. © 2015, © 2015 Taylor & Francis.


PubMed | Qiqihar University, Zhalong National Natural Reserve and International Crane Foundation
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Bulletin of environmental contamination and toxicology | Year: 2016

The dietary uptake of Cd and Pb may contribute to the decline of migratory red-crowned cranes (Grus japonensis) on the Asian mainland. To uncover the relevance of this hypothesis, we determined the concentrations of Pb and Cd as well as further macro and trace elements (Ca, Mg, Cu, Zn, Hg and As) in the gastric contents, gastric wall, intestinal wall, liver, kidney, muscle, and feathers of two individuals found dead in Zhalong Wetland in Northeastern China. Indeed, the Pb concentrations in the liver and kidney tissues was with 31.4 and 60.3mgkg(-1) dry weight (dw), respectively, above concentrations considered as potentially toxic level in common birds (i.e. 30mgkg(-1)). These Pb concentration may have possibly been associated with lethal toxicosis in this endangered species suggesting Pb as major threat for G. japonensis populations. Thus, the inputs of Pb into Zhalong Wetland should be reduced to maintain and reestablish environmental conditions supporting the population development of these migratory red-crowned cranes in the Zhalong Wetland, a critical crane habitat for the long-term sustainability of this species.

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