Top 10 most endangered animals in China

By Yang Xi
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China.org.cn, February 8, 2012
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More and more animals in China have been classified as endangered species because of effects of natural disasters and human activities. Most of the endangered species can be found only at reserves. The key to save endangered animals is to return a safe environment to them.

   Pere David's deer

 

Top 10 most endangered animals in China


Pere David's deer, the rare animal, was first found in China more than 2,000 years ago. This wetland species was known for its unique appearance. It had a camel's neck, a donkey's tail, cow-like hooves and stag antlers. Chinese often called this strange creature Sibuxiang - Four Unlikes.

Status:

According to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN), Pere David'deer is extinct in the wild. All present population live in captivity. Captive Pere David's Deers now number more than 1600 in China.

Geographic Distribution:

In the late 1980's, a number of deer were reintroduced into China and they have been successfully reproduced since then. Now captive Pere David's deers can be found in Beijing, Dafeng, Tianezhou and Yuanyang.

You may not know:

The deer became extinct in China at the turn of the 20th century and it wasn't until 1985 that 22 of them returned from Britain. They had been kept at Woburn Abbey by the dukes of Bedford.

The Pere David's deer originally inhabited in northeastern and east-central China, but it apparently became extinct in the wild at least 1000 years ago. Hunting is thought to have been the main reason for the decline of the wild Pere David's deer.

During the 1800s, a French missionary and naturalist, Father ("Pere" in French) David, observed the animals in the last remaining Chinese herd. Word of this aroused great interest in Europe, and subsequent efforts resulted in a number of these animals being sent to Europe.

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