Biodiv Sci ›› 2021, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (5): 668-679.DOI: 10.17520/biods.2020393

• Data Paper • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Distribution and population status of bovine species in China based on bibliometric analysis

Xing Chen1,2, Tianpei Guan1,*(), Wenle Jiang2, Dandan Li2, Kong Yang1, Sheng Li3,*()   

  1. 1 Institute of Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, Southwest Minzu University, Chengdu 610225
    2 Mianyang Teacher’s College, Mianyang, Sichuan 621000
    3 School of Life Sciences, Peking University, Beijing 100871
  • Received:2020-10-09 Accepted:2021-02-09 Online:2021-05-20 Published:2021-02-20
  • Contact: Tianpei Guan,Sheng Li


Aims: Bovine species are the most abundant ungulates. They are widely distributed all over the world and are an important part of terrestrial ecosystems. According to historical records, there have 33 bovine species recorded in China. Since the mid 20th century, however, anthropogenic activities related to human population expansion and socio- economic development have dramatically transformed the environment, with a significant impact on the habitat of many bovine species in China. A systematic and comprehensive evaluation of the distribution and status of bovine species in China is still lacking, which may halt bovine biodiversity conservation.
Method: We took advantage of fast-growing records of species distribution data and systematically searched related papers (n = 432) published in various academic journals between 2008 and August 31, 2020. We extracted relevant data that included study sites, species identified, and relative abundance, which allowed us to analyze and evaluate the distribution and population status of bovine species in China. We also used IUCN species distribution data and generated a heatmap of bovine species diversity in China.
Results: (1) There were 28 bovine species recorded in these papers including national levels I (n = 16) and II (n = 11) key protected animals, involving 20 priority conservation areas. Red serow (Capricornis rubidus) is a new record in China. (2) The bovine species diversity was found to be highest in Tibet and Gansu (n = 11), followed by Xinjiang (n = 10), Qinghai (n = 7), Sichuan (n = 6), Inner Mongolia (n = 6) and Yunnan (n = 6). (3) The most widely distributed species at the province level is Chinese serow (Capricornis milneedwardsii, n = 16), followed by Chinese goral (Naemorhedus griseus, n = 11) and blue sheep (Pseudois nayaur, n = 8); (4) Six bovine species that lacked distribution and population data are mainly distributed in Qinghai, Xinjiang and Yunnan, including Altai argali (Ovis ammon), Kazakhstan argali (Ovis collium), gayal (Bos frontalis), wild yak (Bos arnee), banteng (Bos javanicus) and Burmese goral (Naemorhedus evansi); (5) There are new distribution records on Chinese goral, red goral (Naemorhedus baileyi), Chinese serow, blue sheep, Siberian ibex (Capra sibirica) and wild yak (Bubalus arnee) outside the distribution range published by IUCN, which need timely revision and updated.
Conclusion: Our analysis provides an objective evaluation of distribution and population status of bovine species in China. Species that have been less studied or surveyed should be the priority of future conservation research. To better evaluate species distribution status, we strongly recommend that data holders publish or share any species distribution data obtained from recent regional surveys.

Key words: species diversity, Artiodactyla, ungulate, biodiversity monitoring, species inventory, priority protected areas