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Poyang Lake

Poyang Lake is situated in the monsoon zone of East Asia, and belongs to warm, humid subtropical climate. The mild climate, abundant rainfall and almost synchronism of water and heat are suitable to the growth of many kinds of high-yielding crops, e.g. rice. Poyang Lake have come to be known as "a land flowing with milk and honey" since ancient time. It is economically forward area in Jiangxi Province and one of the principal bases of commodity grain, edible oil, cotton, and fish production.

 

Poyang Lake area has mild climate. Its annual mean temperature is about 17; Rainfall is abundant and annual mean precipitation is from 14001700mm. There are more than 90 kinds of fishes, among which about 10 kinds of fishes, such as carp, crucian carp, chub, bighead carp, herring, grass carp, Elopichthys bambusa and white fish, are of greater industrial value. Their annual total yield is above 25.50 million kg. Besides, there are many kinds of shellfish, shrimp, crab, waterfowl, lotus root and plenty of aquatic grass

 

The area of outcropped bottomland and wetland is up to 2,787 km2 and it is infrequent in other lakes of China. Poyang Lake is abundant in biological resources. There are 102 species of aquatic plant, affiliating with 38 families; and 122 species of fish, categorized into 23 families in the Lake. There are above 280 species of bird, divided into 12 genera of 51 families, among which water bird has 115 species, accounting for about 51% of 225 species of water bird of the Nation as a whole.

 

Poyang Lake is the mother lake of Jiangxi Province. It is not only plenty of biological resources and fresh water, but also fosters about 10 million population in the vicinities around the Lake. It plays an very important role in the overall development strategy.

 

Poyang Lake possesses unique wetland, biological and ecological resources, biological diversity. The wetland of Poyang Lake is the most typical one in eastern China. It is an important wetland concerned by all over the world. It is significant to China, even to the whole world. Poyang Lake Natural Conservation located in the west of the Lake is the state-level one.

 

I. Geographical Situation

Poyang Lake is located at latitude 28°22- 29°45 north, longitude 115°47- 116°45east. It lies in the northern part of Jiangxi Province, at the southern bank of the middle and lower reaches of Yangtze River. It is divided into two parts by Songmenshan Mountain. The northern part is the water channel joining the Yangtze River, with the length of 40km and the width of 3-5km (the most narrow point is 2.8km or so). The southern part is the main lake, with the length of 133km and the furthest width of 74km.

II. The Largest Fresh Lake in China

Poyang Lake is 173 km long from north to south. The furthest width is 74km, mean width 16.9m from west to east. The lakeshore is 1200km long, and the area of the water body 3,283 km2 (when the water level at Hukou is 21.71m), mean depth 8.4m, and the inmost depth about 25.1m. Its volume is 27.6 billion m3. It is the largest fresh lake in China. It holds water from the five rivers -- Gan River, Fu River, Xing River, Rao River and Xiu River, and emptied into Changjian River, the No.1 river in China, at Hukou after storing up. Its annual afflux of water to Changjian River exceeds the total water amount of the three rivers -- Huanghe River, Huaihe River and Haihe River. It is a seasonal lake with the feature of taking in and sending out water. The area of the watershed is 162.2 thousand km2, taking up 97% of Jiangxi provincial territory, 9% of the Basin of Changjiang River. The annual mean runoff of the watershed is 152.5 billion M3, accounting for 16.3% of that of the watershed of Changjiang River.

 

III. Evolutional History

Poyang Lake was called Pengli Pond, Guantinghu Lake and many other names in ancient period. Over very long time, Penglize Bog expanded to the south and water went over Songmenshan Mountain and reached over the vicinity of Poyang County, under the interaction of geological, meteorological and hydrological factors. So its name is changed to Poyang Lake. Before the invasion of water to the south, the south to Songmenshan Mountain is originally a well-populated Xiaoyang Plain. With gradual expansion of water to the south, Xiaoyang County and Haihun County in the Basin of Poyang Lake is submerged into water successively. There is a saying that "Xiaoyang submerged and Duchang appeared, and Haihun submerged and Wucheng appeared". Over long-term evolution, the modern miniature of the mist-covered and vast Poyang Lake formed about 1600 years ago. It is like a big precious gourd tied with the girdle - Changjiang River of thousands of miles long.

 

IV. The Important International Wetland

Poyang Lake is an important international wetland, and an important storing lake of the main stream of Changjiang River. It possesses very important ecological functions, e.g. floodwater storage and biological diversity protection, in the watershed of Changjiang River. It is one of the 10 ecological conservation areas in China, and also one of the global important ecological areas regulated by WWF. It plays very important roles in maintaining the ecological safety of the region and the Nation.

 

V. "The World of White Cranes" and "The Kingdom of Rare Birds"

Poyang Lake has the annual mean precipitation of 1,636mm, because of the contribution of warm and humid monsoon. Since it possesses humid monsoon climate, Poyang Lake becomes accordingly "the country of rivers and green grass, and blooming plums in the misty rain", and "a land flowing with milk and honey". Its environment and climatic conditions are suitable for migratory birds to live through the winter. At late autumn and early winter in every year, thousands and thousands of birds migrate over here from Siberia of Russia, Mongolia, Japan, Korea, and northeastern and northwestern China. At spring (April) of next year, they gradually migrate away. So far, there are more than 300 kinds and a million plumes of birds, among which 50 kinds are rare birds, in the conservation area. It becomes one of the biggest bird conservation areas in the world. Especially, it is here where the biggest group of white cranes was found in the world. The total number of wintering populations was above 4,000 in 2002, accounting for more than 95% of total of white crane in the world. This is why Poyang Lake comes to be known as "the world of white cranes" and "the kingdom of rare birds

  

VI. Cultural History

Poyang Lake Watershed has been one of the rich, economically forward areas in China since ancient time. Many historically distinguished characters of our Nation, such as Xu Zhi, Tao Yuanmin, Lin Shihong, Liu Shu, Hong Shi, Zhu Yuanzhang and Zhu Da, have lived in the lake area. Many powerful heroes' stories have taken place here. For example, Zhou Yu trained his marine; marine war in Poyang Lake brought about between Zhu Yuanzhang and Chen Youliang; Taiping Army won great victory at Hukou; and Li Liejun launched "Secondary Revolution" at Hukou. Poyang Lake was the only waterway to Jiangxi from the north in ancient time. Anecdotes and legends arising from Poyang Lake are countless. The well-known lines - "fisher boat singing in the sunset glow and echoing at the Pengli Shore", of "Protasis of Tengwang Pavilion" wrote by Wang Bo, a poet in Tang Dynast, has depicted the fishers' cheerful scene of harvesting of fish back from Poyang Lake. Su Shi, a great poet in Song Dynast, wrote that "Green Mountains around, water without bound, in the middle was painted small or big island" in the poem of "Li Sishun's Drawing of Splendid Island of Changjiang River", which has given us a picture of the beautiful scenery of Poyang Lake.

Splendid mountains and wonderful islands can be found everywhere around Poyang Lake. Mt. Shizhongshan and Mt. Dagushan in Hukou County, Mt. Nanshan and Laoyemiao Shrine in Douchang County and Mt. Luoxingdun in Xingzi County are intriguing tourist attractions. All scenic spots are connected to form a tourist route through cruisers, under the efforts of Jiujiang Tourism all-sidedly, struggle hard in order to turn Jingdezhen into a rich, civilized modernized mountains and rivers (landscape) ecological garden city.