Biodiversity Science ›› 2018, Vol. 26 ›› Issue (2): 202-209.doi: 10.17520/biods.2017305

• Orginal Article • Previous Article     Next Article

From nature reserve to national park system pilot: Changes of environmental coverage in the Three-River-Source National Park and implications for amphibian and reptile conservation

Huijie Qiao1, Xiaoyi Wang2, Wei Wang3, Zhenhua Luo4, Ke Tang2, Yan Huang2, 5, Shengnan Yang2, 5, Weiwei Cao6, Xinquan Zhao2, 7, Jianping Jiang2, Junhua Hu2, *   

  1. 1 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101
    2 Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chengdu 610041
    3 Chinese Research Academy of Environmental Sciences, Beijing 100012
    4 School of Life Sciences, Central China Normal University, Wuhan 430079
    5 School of Life Sciences, China West Normal University, Nanchong, Sichuan 637009
    6 College of Control Science and Engineering, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310027
    7 Northwest Institute of Plateau Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xining 810008
  • Received:2017-11-14 Accepted:2018-02-14 Online:2018-05-05
  • Hu Junhua
  • About author:

    # Co-first authors

The Three-River-Source (TRS) region, which harbors an evolutionarily unique and impressively large portion of plateau biodiversity, is an important national ecological security shelter zone. Acting as the first system pilot in China, the TRS National Park will be turned into both the exhibition of nature conservation and a heritage area of ecological culture on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. To better contribute to the construction of the TRS National Park, we compared the TRS National Park with the TRS and Kekexili Nature Reserves with respect to elevation, annual mean temperature and annual precipitation. By combining the environmental conditions of the occurrences of four species of amphibians and reptiles (i.e., Rana kukunoris, Nanorana pleskei, Scutiger boulengeri, and Phrynocephalus vlangalii) both inside and outside the national park, we explored potential opportunities and challenges for the conservation of poor-dispersal-ability species (including amphibians and reptiles) during construction of the TRS National Park. While the national park and the nature reserves had large overlap in geographical space, the environmental conditions were different between them. The preferred environmental conditions of the four species were mostly not included in the TRS National Park, but were included in the nature reserves. Given the unique geographical location of the TRS region and its sensitivity to climate change, the effective protection of amphibians and reptiles in this region will not only contribute to maintaining genetic diversity of species and the integrality of regional ecosystems, but also will help to achieve the goal of the TRS National Park and assist with the construction of ecological civilization. Thus, within the TRS National Park, to strengthen basic biological research, it is important to conduct long-term monitoring studies of population dynamics and community structure. Based on this, the potential effects of environmental changes on the distribution, genetic diversity, behavior, morphological traits, population dynamics and community of amphibians and reptiles could be understood, with the aim of achieving their sustainable survival within the TRS National Park in the face of global change.

Key words: national park, Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, Three-River-Source, annual mean temperature, annual precipitation, climate change, long-term monitoring, biodiversity conservation

Fig. 1

The differences of geographic distributions between the Three-River-Source National Park and the nature reserves"

Fig. 2

The comparisons of the density in different levels in elevation, annual mean temperature and annual precipitation between the Three-River-Source National Park and the nature reserves"

Fig. 3

The comparisons between the overlapped and non-overlapped areas of the Three-River-Source National Park and the nature reserves in elevation, annual mean temperature and annual precipitation"

Fig. 4

The spatial distribution of areas (black) with the combined condition of elevation < 4,200 m, annual temperature > -3℃ and annual precipitation > 500 mm"

Fig. 5

The histograms and density curves of elevation, annual mean temperature and annual precipitation for the known occurrences of Rana kukunoris, Nanorana pleskei, Scutiger boulengeri, and Phrynocephalus vlangalii"

Table 1

The statistics of elevation, annual mean temperature and annual precipitation for the known occurrences of Rana kukunoris, Nanorana pleskei, Scutiger boulengeri, and Phrynocephalus vlangalii"

分布点数量 No. of occurrences 不属于国家公园环境空间的比例
Proportion outside the environmental space of National Park (%)
> Threshold
< Threshold
4,200 m 倭蛙 Nanorana pleskei 7 64 90.1
青海沙蜥 Phrynocephalus vlangalii 23 188 89.1
高原林蛙 Rana kukunoris 3 101 97.1
西藏齿突蟾 Scutiger boulengeri 36 64 64.0
Annual mean
-3℃ 倭蛙 Nanorana pleskei 68 3 95.8
青海沙蜥 Phrynocephalus vlangalii 192 19 91.0
高原林蛙 Rana kukunoris 104 0 100
西藏齿突蟾 Scutiger boulengeri 90 10 90.0
Annual precipitation
500 mm 倭蛙 Nanorana pleskei 69 2 97.2
青海沙蜥 Phrynocephalus vlangalii 29 182 13.7
高原林蛙 Rana kukunoris 84 20 80.8
西藏齿突蟾 Scutiger boulengeri 76 24 76.0
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