Biodiversity Science ›› 2018, Vol. 26 ›› Issue (4): 406-413.doi: 10.17520/biods.2017269

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The significance of forest resources and the conservation of germplasm resources in the Yangtze River Basin

Junwei Ye1, 2, Yunfei Zhang2, Xiaojuan Wang2, Li Cai2, Jiakuan Chen3, *()   

  1. 1 Germplasm Bank of Wild Species in Southwest China, Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming 650201
    2 Natural History Research Center for Shanghai Natural History Museum, Shanghai Science & Technology Museum, Shanghai 200127;
    3 Institute of Biodiversity Science, Fudan University, Shanghai 200438
  • Received:2017-10-18 Accepted:2018-02-28 Online:2018-09-11
  • Chen Jiakuan
  • About author:

    # Co-first authors

The Yangtze River Basin in China has abundant forest resources, including high species diversity, endemism, and genetic diversity. According to archaeological evidence, forest resources played a substantial role during the formation and development of Yangtze River Civilization in the Paleolithic and Neolithic Age. Food, energy, tools, architecture, and boats were all derived from forest resources. At present, the Yangtze River Basin and Pearl River Basin have become the domestic center of wood supply in China. Faced with insufficient timber supply and shortages of large diameter timber, responsible management of the Yangtze River Basin forest resources is crucial to guarantee domestic timber security in the future. Understanding the status of remaining resources and creating an improved preservation system are needed to effectively conserve forest germplasm resources in the Yangtze River Basin. A comprehensive investigation of forest germplasm resources and diversity analyses of important tree species and a preservation system that is composed of in situ, ex situ and vitro preservation is urgently needed.

Key words: Yangtze River Basin, forest germplasm resource, Yangtze River civilization, wood security, preservation system

Fig. 1

Protected areas (blue region), national nature reserve (black point), national forest genetic resources bank (white point), strategic reserve timber production bases (red region) and center of seed plant endemism (black square) in Yangtze River Basin. Data of protected areas from WDPA (World Database on Protected Areas, Data of center of seed plant endemism from López-Pujol et al (2011), number in the square indicates the endemic center in sequence of level of plant endemism."

Fig. 2

Wood utilizations of Yangtze River Civilization in different phases. From left to right, the black square indicates wood utilizations in energy, tools, architecture and boat, white indicate no such utilization. Early Neolithic, 1,2000-9,000 BP; Early-middle Neolithic, 9,000-7,000 BP; Late-middle Neolithic, 7,000-5,000 BP; Late Neolithic, 5,000-4,000 BP."

Fig. 3

The domestic round wood production (a), imported round wood and its ratio in total consumption (b) in 1961-2015. Data from Food and Agriculture Organization of United Nations (FAO)."

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