name Chinese Giant
CITES(1997) Appendix I
Recognization The largest salamander in China. Total length is up to 2 meters. Head and body flattened; tail compressed, about half of the snout-vent length. Eyes small, without eyelids; mouth opening large, vomerine teeth arranged in a curve parallel to the maxillary teeth. A distinct dermal fold on both sides of body. Paired turbercles scattered on dorsal surface of head and flanks of body.
Local Range Found widely in middle and lower tributaries of Chang Jiang (the Yangtze River), Huang He (the Yellow River), and Zhu Jiang (the Pearl River). Currently the population is comparatively abundant in Hunan, Hubei, Sichuan, Guizhou, Shaanxi, and Henan provinces.
Biology Inhabits mountain streams at elevations below 1500 meters, especially between 300 and 800 meters. Often found in larger streams with swift current, clear and cool water, bottoms abundant in rocky crevices and holes.
Current Status Reductions of the giant salamander population is reflected not only in fewer number, but also is smaller and smaller being individuals captured. The factors causing population reduction are : ① Over collecting by people It is considered the most delicious wildlife by Chinese people and is over collected and killed every year. ②Changes of environment by human activity Among which the most harmful is constructing dams across rivers thus drawing water for electric power or irrigation; this changes its habitat and influences its reproduction. ③ Pollution of aquatic area Water containing poisonous materials such as industrial waste, chemical fertilizer, and pesticides empty into streams and rivers where giant salamander live and killed them, caused its numbers to sharply decrease, or even become extinct in the wild in some places.
Artificial Breeding Artificial breeding began since 1970s in Hunan, Shaanxi, Jiangxi and other provinces. Many research organizations and breeding farms were established then. Among them is Shangzhi institute of Giant Salamander Breeding, established in 1973. Staffs of this institute have done a lot of work in breeding giant salamander and had certain success in artificial of breeding giant salamander.
Protective Measures and Suggestion Giant salamander has already been classified as a state major protected wildlife grade Ⅱ since 1988 . It is suggested ① to let people fully understand the importance of wildlife protection; ② promoting studies on artificial breeding is necessary in addition to protection of giant salamander in the wild; ③ emphasizing construction of nature reserves; ④perfecting protective regulations and putting them into effect .Original found at http://www.hainnu.edu.cn/yuanxisz/SHENGWU/museum/english/My%20Webs/amphibians/dayi.htm [disappeard from the web]