Rare Yangtze sturgeon spotted in Yangtze River tributary in SW China

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CHONGQING, May 18 (Xinhua) -- Researchers have spotted the Yangtze sturgeon, an endangered species under first-class national protection, in a tributary of Yangtze River in southwest China's Chongqing Municipality while carrying out a fish stock monitoring.

Measuring 183 km in length, Modaoxi is a major tributary of the Yangtze River. This is the first sighting of the Yangtze River sturgeon in the Yunyang County section of the river in six years, highlighting the positive impact of a comprehensive fishing ban in the area.

Zhu Qiguang, from the Institute of Hydroecology, under the administration of both the Ministry of Water Resources and the Chinese Academy of Sciences, reported that they have also observed some fish species under second-class national protection. "Judging from the monitoring results, the frequency of rare protected species has increased significantly compared to previous years," he said.

Nearly 150 species of fish inhabit the county, and the recovery trend of local aquatic biodiversity is positive, with a significant increase in the number of key protected aquatic wild animals, according to the monitoring results.

To restore the biodiversity along the Yangtze River, China implemented a complete fishing ban in 332 conservation areas of the Yangtze River basin in January 2020. The move has since been expanded to a 10-year moratorium along the river's main streams and major tributaries, effective Jan. 1, 2021. Enditem

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