Residents in N China's Inner Mongolia persistently protect rare wild animals

(People's Daily Online) 16:12, September 06, 2021
Residents in N China's Inner Mongolia persistently protect rare wild animals
Photo shows Airbin. (Photo/Zhang Linhu)

Local residents in north China's Inner Mongolia autonomous region have made persistent efforts in protecting wild animals for several years, increasing their populations and contributing to biological diversity in the region.

Airbin, 69, has been providing water for blue sheep living in the valley of the Arbas Mountain in Qipanjing town, Otog Banner of the region’s Ordos city for 11 years. Thanks to his continuous efforts, the population of the species, which is under second-class state protection in China, has increased from less than 10 to over 100.

As an amateur photographer, he once followed a blue sheep trail and found that the ewes did not have sufficient milk to feed their babies due to lack of water. Since then, he decided to bring water to the wild animals, traveling 15 kilometers from his home by motorcycle and taking over 20 kilograms of water to the top of the mountain every other day. He had to climb down a steep 100-meter cliff to drop the water into a stone groove at the valley bottom for the blue sheep.

“It’s very dangerous and a lot of water was lost in the process,” Airbin recalled, adding that he later brought a 100-meter-long water hose pipe to pour the water all the way to the stone groove.

Today, the local government has constructed an electrified motor-pumped well and several ponds for the sheep to drink water from.

A similar story was seen in a town of Urad Rear Banner of Bayannur city in the region. Ganbaatar, a 42-year-old herdsman, has spent two decades protecting Siberian ibex, a species under first-class state protection in China, bringing an over 10-fold increase in their populations.

Ganbaatar’s measures included delivering hay and water to the Siberian ibex, installing infrared cameras to monitor their activities, and establishing a team to patrol the species’ habitat and combat poaching.

As the number of Siberian ibex grew, so did those of its natural enemies – wolves and lynxes, demonstrating the biodiversity in the region.

“Protecting biodiversity should not rely solely on the government. The participation of the public is a prerequisite for implementing the relevant policies,” said Wei Zhiyong, head of the Hohhot Regional Center of Expertise on UN Education Sustainable Development. 


(Web editor: Hongyu, Liang Jun)


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