- Locations: China - predominantly Shaanxi, Guizhou, Guangdong and Guangxi provinces
- Active dates: 2011 - ongoing
To build the evidence base and capacity to underpin, promote and conduct a strategic conservation plan for the Chinese giant salamander.
The Chinese giant salamander originally occupied a range that encompassed mountain tributaries of the Pearl, Yellow and Yangtze Rivers across 17 provinces in China. Since the 1960s, the Chinese giant salamander has experienced a severe range-wide decline in the wild. This decline appears to be mainly due to overexploitation for food and also habitat destruction. There has also been a marked lack of research concerning the historic and current distribution, status of, and threats to, this species. The recent development of a rapidly growing Chinese giant salamander farming industry might have exacerbated the regional extinction of wild populations. However, until this project had started, little was known about the extent of Chinese giant salamander farming, its potential, positive or negative, impacts on Chinese giant salamander conservation or the possible impact of Chinese giant salamander protection on local livelihoods.
Knowledge Based Achievements
- We created the first robust dataset of population distribution, relative abundance and threat distribution across key range areas and genetic connectivity.
- We also standardised the national surveys for the Chinese giant salamander, which was conducted at 100 sites across China, allowing the first understanding of this species’ current status and threats to inform future conservation planning.
- We identified key sites for Chinese giant salamander in situ conservation.
Capacity Based Achievements
- We improved in-country resources and capacity for addressing both in situ and ex situ conservation concerns. This included: monitoring protocols; population genetics database and biobanked material; disease diagnostic protocols and conservation breeding protocols.
- We ran two campaigns; the establishment of an effective national and international In-country capacity developed in Chinese giant salamander survey and monitoring, genetic screening and diseases diagnosis.
Public Engagement Achievements
- We introduced the Community Education Public Awareness (CEPA) strategy.
- We greatly promoted the Chinese giant salamander profile through diverse CEPA campaigns and effective stakeholder engagement at regional, national and international levels.
Collaborators and Supporters
Institute of Hydrobiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Chinese Academy of Sciences
Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden
Kunming Institute of Zoology
Shaanxi Normal University
Related blog posts
A small population of Chinese Giant Salamander found in Guangxi province
Following Lv Jingcai’s recent blog about the Chinese giant salamander EDGE fellow Yan Fang has written a quick update from the project in China….
1,200 Chinese giant salamanders released into the wild
Edge fellow Fang Yan shares news of an initiative to help the recovery of wild Chinese giant salamander populations. During 23rd September to 23rd…
A brutal killer of the Chinese giant salamander
Zhou Feng’s EDGE Fellowship project focuses on diagnosing pathogens that threaten the Chinese giant salamander. In her latest blog, she tell us about the…
Chinese giant salamander conservation: engagement and questionnaires survey in Xi’an
This August we held a Chinese Giant Salamander event in Xi’an this was to raise publicity for the species as well as carry out…