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Safe haven for wildlife [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2019-3-21 17:33:59 |Display all floors

Tibetan antelopes in Shuanghu. [Photo by Purbu Zhaxi/Xinhua]

Shuanghu county, located 5,000 meters above sea level in Southwest China's Tibet autonomous region, suffers from strong winds 200 days a year. With a year-round temperature averaging -5 C, Shuanghu is home to the world's third largest glacier, the Purog Kangri. Occasionally, the temperature here drops to -40 C.

The county, about 120,000 square kilometers in area, lies in the middle of the Qiangtang National Nature Reserve. The name "Shuanghu" means "two lakes." But the county has many lakes within its boundary.

When visiting Shuanghu in winter, you can treat yourself to one of nature's most attractive scenes: the sun casting its rays upon frozen lakes and wild animals such as kiangs, Tibetan antelopes and yaks wandering on meadows at the foot of snow mountains, unfazed by the odd vehicle passing by.


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Post time 2019-3-21 17:34:21 |Display all floors

A herdsman in Shuanghu. [Photo by Purbu Zhaxi/Xinhua]

There are 14,000 residents in Shuanghu. It's one of the lowest population densities in China. In Dongmar township, the seat of the county's government, rows of ochre and white Tibetan-style buildings come into view. Unsurprisingly, few residents are spotted here.

After a 90-kilometer drive from Dongmar, we ran into three wildlife conservators who were on a patrol mission near the Purog Kangri glacier. At such an altitude, breathing is not easy, let alone going on routine patrols all year round. We tried to follow the rangers, but our off-road vehicle kept sinking into the snow.

There are 135 conservation staff members working in Shuanghu's 15 wildlife management and conservation stations to improve protection of wild animals. In 2018, the county government suspended construction of tourism-related support facilities around the Purog Kangri glacier to better protect the environment.

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Post time 2019-3-21 17:34:44 |Display all floors

A photovoltaic power plant in Shuanghu county, Tibet autonomous region. [Photo by Purbu Zhaxi/Xinhua]


"We see Tibetan antelopes more often than before," said Samkar, a wildlife conservator. "As long as I can contribute to my hometown's environmental protection efforts, it's worth it."

Shuanghu now has about 20,000 wild yaks and 200,000 Tibetan antelopes, plus more than 20 rare species such as the snow leopard and brown bear.

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Post time 2019-3-21 17:37:39 |Display all floors

Wildlife management and conservation station staff members warm their hands by the fire in Shuanghu. [Photo by Purbu Zhaxi/Xinhua]


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Post time 2019-3-21 17:37:53 |Display all floors


Wildlife management and conservation station staff members are on a patrol mission in Shuanghu. [Photo by Purbu Zhaxi/Xinhua]


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Post time 2019-3-21 17:38:04 |Display all floors

Villagers watch festive performance in Garco township of Shuanghu. [Photo by Purbu Zhaxi/Xinhua]


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Post time 2019-3-21 17:38:17 |Display all floors


A herdswoman takes care of her child in Garco. [Photo by Purbu Zhaxi/Xinhua]


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