Thursday, February 15, 2007

Tracking and Survey Training, China

The second part of the tiger and ungulate survey and tracking training took part in Hun Chun Nature Reserve in Northeast China from February 1 to 10, 2007. About 20 participants from both the reserve and WCS China took part in the training and surveys. Hun Chun NR is a long and thin nature reserve stretching along the Russian border all the way down to the North Korean border. It is in a beautiful area with many hills, creeks and rivers. The first picture is a view of North Korea just a short way from the border. The border goes along a river which can be seen to the right and center of the photo. The picture is taken from a hill just inside China looking southward. The second photo below shows me with China to the north on the exact same ridge. This specific transect along the N. Korean borde was done on the last day of the training and surveying. By that time we had finished about 30 transects in all for Hun Chun NR. On this transect we saw several fresh hare and Sikha deer tracks, but unfortunately no tiger or leopard tracks. Another important aspect of the work done along these transects was to mark by GPS and on the map any snares that were found. The snares were then removed. It is a sad fact that much of the wildlife in Northeast China is disappearing due to illegal snares. Along one transect a group of four people removed as many as 80 snares.

The transects were often as long as 15 km so it was a lot of hiking, often in deep snow. Although it was quite cumbersome it nevertheless was really worth the hard work as the participants learned a great deal about tracking and tiger and ungulate surveying methods, not to mention experiencing the great scenery and nature.

2 comments:

Anbarasi said...

Looks like a lotttt of field work... !

Piai said...

Hiya.

Let's hope that this Golden Pig Year will be one that is filled with new wealth of wisdom and knowledge, as opposed to what a pig verbally represents.

I was some kilometres away from where you are. I was in Heilongjiang in December 2006 on a trip with my family. We visited a Siberian Tiger reserve there, which of course reminded me of you. I could have hopped over but we were on a tight schedule. The Chinese reserve looked like a 'safari' but judging from the number of cats there, the reserve might have had some success. For reasons that are unclear to me, some tigers that had been released into the wild were recaptured and brought back into the reserve.

The negative 25 degree temperatures I had experienced in NE China made the negative 15 degree temperature in the Baltic States which I visited in early February so bearable!

Hopefully, I will see you in Vladisvostok - perhaps on my way to St Petersburg one day. Russia may well be my 71st country to visit.

Take care. Enjoy.

P-J Koe