Animal Rights

A Decade of Scientific Exploration on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

Main image to the post A Decade of Scientific Exploration on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

Wu Xiaomin, a renowned scientist, has dedicated over a decade to unraveling the mysteries of Tibetan antelope migration. As a first-class protected species in China, Tibetan antelopes have faced threats from excessive hunting and habitat changes. However, conservation efforts have led to a steady increase in their population, with over 300,000 individuals recorded in China.

The Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, with its vast uninhabited areas and high altitude, presents challenges for studying Tibetan antelope migration. Wu's team has employed traditional tracking methods and advanced technologies, such as satellite navigation and camera systems, to gain insights into their movement patterns.

Tibetan antelopes exhibit seasonal reproductive migration. Female antelopes gather in summer birthing areas, giving birth from mid-June to early July. After birthing, they return to their wintering habitats in August. The Changtang region is a significant birthing area, with antelopes congregating at the foot of the Kunlun Mountains or even crossing them to reach the Altun Mountains.

Wu emphasizes the importance of wintering areas for Tibetan antelopes, where they spend three-quarters of the year. He notes that only about 30% of calves survive, highlighting the resilience of this species in the harsh conditions of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. Wu's ongoing research aims to deepen our understanding of Tibetan antelope migration and contribute to their conservation.

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May 21, 2023 | 05:09