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Yunnan, a many splendored life_02

Article from Yunnan Daily

In everyone's heart, there is a Yunnan dream, and every corner of Yunnan has a many splendoured life.

This land boasts the world's most complex and unique terrain, giving rise to a myriad of climate types. Nourished by this fertile soil, it also imparts rich cultural significance to all living things.

Come to Yunnan and experience "Yunnan, a many splendoured life.” Feel the breathtaking natural scenery and the rich ethnic customs. The weather here feels like perpetual spring, with flowers blooming throughout the four seasons. Stepping into Yunnan is like stepping into eternal spring.

So, where does the sentence “Yunnan, a many splendored life” come from?

(II) The Song of Life

Nature and all living things whisper, and life continues to thrive from generation to generation.

The unique geographical features and varying altitudes create a diverse climate in Yunnan. Within a range of over 900 kilometres from north to south, Yunnan exhibits seven climate zones, equivalent to climate variations from Hainan Island to Heilongjiang. In addition, local high mountains show distinct vertical climate zones, creating a three-dimensional climate spectrum with "four seasons in one mountain, and different weather every ten miles."

This rich variety of climate types provides more possibilities for the reproduction of living beings. According to relevant statistics, Yunnan has recorded 25,434 species, making it one of the most biodiverse regions globally. Therefore, Yunnan is also known as the "Plant Kingdom," "Animal Kingdom," and "World Garden."

The "crown" of Yunnan's biological kingdom lies in the uniqueness and rarity of its species. The six rushing rivers serve as corridors for the exchange of fauna between the north and south. Many tropical organisms can grow along the region rich in water and heat all the way to Shangri-La, while species from the Himalayas and the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau spread southward along the high mountains.

For example, Yunnan's deciduous cypress can be considered a magical plant species. Millions of years ago, the Indian plate deeply penetrated the Eurasian plate, and the colossal force generated by the collision stirred and twisted the earth. A large number of plants scattered and propagated, allowing species such as the deciduous cypress, usually seen in the Arctic Circle, to appear in the low-latitude Yunnan.

Similarly, the Giant Rhododendron, which grows in the western part of Yunnan, is also a legend. It is the tallest evergreen tree among rhododendrons, hailed as the king of rhododendrons worldwide, with a current population of no more than 3,000 trees. Growing in deep mountains, the Giant Rhododendron was only discovered by biologists in modern times. It undergoes a long growth period from sapling to flowering, making each tree exceptionally precious.

In this fertile land of Yunnan, the primitive and wild nature, along with the symbiotic pulse of life between different organisms remains. The rich and diverse vegetation provides space for the survival and reproduction of various wildlife.

In December 2020, a family of Asian elephants named the "Broken Nose Family" living in the Mengyang Protection Area in Xishuangbanna embarked on an unexpected journey, capturing global attention.

In the high-altitude coniferous forest belt near the snow line of the mountain glaciers, there is a unique Chinese species, the Yunnan snub-nosed monkey, an adorable "mountain spirit" alongside the giant panda, both considered national treasures.

Hidden in the seasonal rainforest, the green peafowl, with its colourful and beautiful feathers, is the only native peafowl species in China, acclaimed as the "king of birds."

Every mid-June in the Butterfly Valley of Jinping, Yunnan, hundreds of millions of arrowhead butterflies undergo mass eclosion, creating a rare ecological spectacle in the world.

Nature and all living things whisper, and life continues to thrive from generation to generation.

In January last year, the critically endangered bird, the Baer's pochard, reappeared at Erhai Lake. Meanwhile, the Erhai golden-line barbel, known as the "antique" of Erhai Lake, experienced a "floating fate" of disappearing and also reappearing.

With the continuous improvement of the ecological environment and the gradual deepening of scientific research, numerous new species and new record species continue to be discovered. The documented number of biological species in Yunnan has been steadily increasing. In the nearly 30 years from 1992 to 2020, a total of 3,718 new species have been discovered within Yunnan province. In recent years, new species in Yunnan have been astonishingly "released" almost every one or two weeks.

In the midst of the old and the new, time overlaps here.

We can proudly say that Yunnan's diverse natural and climatic environments have nurtured and tempered the most awe-inspiring miracles of life.