Biodiv Sci ›› 2021, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (11): 1490-1504.DOI: 10.17520/biods.2021165

• Original Papers:Animal Diversity • Previous Articles     Next Articles

The diversity of large- and medium-sized terrestrial mammals and birds in the Giant Panda National Park: A meta-analysis based on camera-trapping data

Jia Tian1, Shuyi Zhu1, Xiaofeng Zhang3, Liwen He4, Xiaodong Gu5, Tianpei Guan6,*(), Sheng Li1,2,*()   

  1. 1 School of Life Sciences, Peking University, Beijing 100871
    2 Institute of Ecology, Peking University, Beijing 100871
    3 Forestry Administration of Shaanxi Province, Xi’an 710082
    4 Baishuijiang National Nature Reserve, Longnan, Gansu 746400
    5 Forestry and Grassland Administration of Sichuan Province, Chengdu 610081
    6 Institute of Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, Southwest Minzu University, Chengdu 610225
  • Received:2021-04-28 Accepted:2021-07-29 Online:2021-11-20 Published:2021-08-12
  • Contact: Tianpei Guan,Sheng Li

Abstract:

Aims Biodiversity monitoring is the foundation of conservation work in national parks. Systematic conservation planning and effective management actions within these parks highly rely on an in-depth evaluation of biodiversity metrics. In China, the Giant Panda National Park (GPNP) is one of the first five national parks. To establish baseline metrics of mammal and bird diversity in GPNP, we conducted a meta-analysis based on published camera-trapping data.
Methods We systematically searched academic publications, project reports, and news articles that reported on wildlife camera-trapping studies between 2005 and 2020 in GPNP. We also conducted a questionnaire survey on the history and results of camera-trap monitoring projects within the protected areas of the region. These data were compiled for statistical analysis.
Result Between 2005 and 2020, 71 wild mammal species belonging to 6 orders, 22 families and 55 genera, and 232 wild bird species belonging to 13 orders, 45 families and 132 genera were recorded via camera-trap monitoring in 51 protected areas within GPNP. Among the four mountain ranges within GPNP (i.e., Mts. Qinling, Mts. Minshan, Mts. Qionglai and Mts. Xiangling), the species richness of large- and medium-sized terrestrial mammals and birds was the highest in Mts. Qionglai and Mts. Minshan (40 mammal and 12 pheasant species for each) and the lowest in Mts. Xiangling (25 mammal and 7 pheasant species). The recorded number of target species in individual protected areas was positively correlated with the area of protected area, sampling effort (measured as number of camera-days), and the camera station elevation range. The numbers of species recorded in national protected areas (28 ± 8.3, mean ± SD) were significantly higher than those in provincial protected areas (19 ± 8.9). Four large carnivores of Felidae and Canidae (leopard Panthera pardus, snow leopard P. uncia, wolf Canis lupus and dhole Cuon alpinus) were recorded in GPNP, primarily from Mts. Qinling and Mts. Qionglai, while no large carnivores were recorded within the park in Mts. Minshan and only one wolf was recorded in Mts. Xiangling.
Conclusion The previous protected area network and camera-trapping monitoring network prior to the establishment of GPNP have already accumulated a high quantity of data on wild mammals and birds in this region. These data provide a reliable baseline biodiversity inventory for the pilot and construction phases of GPNP. In light of these results, GPNP should design and implement a standardized wildlife monitoring system to further provide additional data for future evaluations of park management, decision-making, and conservation effectiveness.

Key words: protected area system, biodiversity inventory, wildlife monitoring, camera-trapping network, large carnivores, protected area management