Background introduction of Baijitan Nature Reserve of Ningxia
Baijitan Nature Reserve is located in the south of Maousu Sandland and in the east of the desert area in Lingwu City, whose southern area is next to Huangtu Hills and western are is nearby Ningxia Plain, where the highest elevation is 1650m. In 2000, Baijitan Nature Reserve was promoted to a national nature reserve. In 2012, the area of Baijitan was adjusted to 70921hm2. The major landform in southern reverse is sandland and hills, while the north is dominant by mountains and desert. Baijitan Nature Reserve mainly works by planting, diversified economy, and comprehensive utilization.
Baijitan Nature Reserve, in northwest inland areas of China, belongs to the temperate arid zone, has the typical characteristics of a continental climate. There is a dry climate. The annual average precipitation there is 200 mm or so, and concentrated in July, August, and September. Evaporation there is heavy, the sunshine time is long. Winter, there is cold and long, while summer is hot and long. Besides, there is the severe sandy wind in spring and winter, and the frost-free season is quite short.
In August and September, the temperature in reserve is about 20 degrees. The days are long and the nights are short, and temperature varies widely from day to night. Due to the long sunshine time, ultraviolet light is strong so that sun-protection is necessary.
The water resources in this region mainly come from the atmospheric precipitation, but because it is located in the inland, there is little precipitation and little surface water, so it is a serious water shortage. The terrain in this area is complex, and with the reason for soil quality, it is not easy to store water. As a result, the groundwater is generally buried deep, the water situation is complex, and the water quality is poor
The dominant soil in Baijitan Nature Reserve is sierozem and aeolian sandy soil. Sierozem is easy to salinize, and it will produce calcareous deposits with water in the rainy season. Aeolian sandy soil is influenced by desertification and swarding process so that its soil-forming process is unstable, which is quite poor.
Grassland: Baijitan Nature Reserve mainly belongs to desert grassland, which is the aridest vegetation type in the grassland vegetation. The main growing plants there are drought-tolerant plants with small leaves and deep roots to adapt to the arid living environment.
Desert: desert vegetation is a type of sparse vegetation consisting of small trees and shrubs with strong or excessive drought. The desert vegetation of Baijitan Nature Reserve is distributed in the low mounts and hills in the northern part of the reserve. The soil is thin, the texture is coarse, dry, and bare. Due to windy and sandy climate and strong evaporation, the earth surface is mainly made by gravel. Therefore, the vegetation there is sparse or barren.
Artificial vegetation: artificial vegetation, also known as cultivated vegetation, refers to the vegetation formed through artificial planting and cultivation. The artificial vegetation in the protection area mainly includes Caragana Korshinsk Kom, Calligonum arborescens Litv, Hedysarum scoparium, Salix cheilophila. The sandy shrub vegetation composed of these plants serves as a protective area against wind and sand.
Inside Baijitan Nature Reserve, due to the influence of the various terrains, there is a great difference from side to side. Perennial herbs have a great advantage, up to 58%~80%. Due to the decrease of water resources from south to north, the vegetation type transforms from grassland to desert, and the proportion of drought-tolerant shrubs and annual herbs gradually increases from south to north.
In recent years, however, among the xerophytic shrub vegetation, herbaceous plants with higher requirements on water conditions account for more than 70%, reflecting the grassland conversion of desert vegetation in the reserve, which means the local ecological environment is gradually improving.
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