A national wetland trial investigation started Wednesday in the state mangrove nature reserve in south China's Hainan Province.
After the trial in Hainan, the investigation will spread all over the country, according to the State Administration of Forestry (SAF).
The investigation aims to draw a clear picture of China's wetland fauna and flora situation in order to help decision makers better protect wetland resources, said the SAF.
The areas under investigation includes rivers with a width of more than 10 meters, natural wetlands larger than eight hectares and artificial wetlands such as reservoirs, rice farms and scenic lakes in cities.
For the first time, satellite remote sensing technology, geographic information systems and global position system will be used, said Huang Guilin, an official with the SAF.
Wetlands play an important role in regulating climate, improving the ecological environment, and are home to endangered wildlife.
The country will launch such investigation every five years to monitor changes in the wetlands, said Huang.
(Xinhua News Agency August 7, 2003)