Guardian angels for wildlife | 2016-12-05 09:50

Guardian angels for wildlife

Zhou Honglin and Gu Yongqiang patrol the mountains on February, 7, 2015. Often the rangers take with them a dog during their patrol. [Photo/VCG]

Dubbed as the "love corridor for pandas", Anzihe natural reserve area is home to pandas, golden monkeys, clouded leopards and five other categories of wild animals living in more than 100,000-hectare area under first-class national protection.

Zhou Honglin and Gu Yongqiang have been working at the nature reserve since 1992, and their job responsibilities include monitoring wildlife, watching out for forest fire and fighting poachers and illegal deforestation.

Each time Gu patrols the mountains, he takes with him a chopper. "Sometimes we need to create a new trail because there are no existing trails," said Gu.

"We patrol the mountain everyday and the roundtrip through the shortest patrol route lasts six to seven hours," said Fu Qiang, who has been working at the nature reserve for seven years. “For some longer patrol routes, we need to stay in the mountains for days and spend the nights in temporary tents.”

Despite the harsh conditions, the biggest difficulty is tourists' intrusion into the nature reserve. "Many people think it’s harmless to enter the reserved area, but their presence harms the reserved ecology," said Fu.

Pandas used to come to the nearby Jiguanshan forest park, but now they have retreated deeper inside the nature reserve due to more and more intrusions, said Fu.

The nature reserves in China often have core areas, buffer areas and experimental areas. People are not allowed to enter the core areas, only scientific and research and observatory activities are permitted in the buffer areas, and experiments, interns, teachings and visits are permitted in the experimental areas, according to the regulations about the management of nature reserves China.

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