Assessment of the traffic disturbance to Tibetan antelopes in Hoh-Xil national nature reserve

Lin Xia

The Tibetan Antelope or Chiru is listed in the IUCN Red List as a Threatened Species. Each year, Tibetan antelopes will migrate to the hinterland of Hoh-xil to give birth to their offspring. Incidentally, the Qinghai-Xizang (Tibet) Highway (QTH) and the Qinghai-Tibet Railway (QTR) lay right in path. Deterioration of the antelope’s natural habitat and the degradation of the environment caused by the development of transportation facilities and other human activities are continuing threats to the survival of the species. This project aims to assess disturbances to the migration caused by the rail and the road traffic, the conservation status of the species will be studied with field-monitoring techniques. Results from this study may diagnose any potential problems with infrastructure development at an early stage and provide more reliable data on behavioral ecology and migration of chirus. The assess of road and rail traffic disturbance to chirus will provide valuable information to the transportation agency for reducing the conflict between transportation development and conservation. In this follow-up project we will strengthen and improve our field work and cooperation with the local staff. The team members are from different organizations, who will be great help in training and creating links with people from their organization. The project will incorporate field techniques training to staff from Department of administrative management of Qinghai province, the HXNR, Sanjiangyuan NR (adjacent to HXNR), Ministry of Railways (MOR), and some local residents. An efficient network will be created and strengthened between the protect area and the local government, and will be in a long term monitoring plan to provide data of the chiru migration continuously.

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