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Mao'er Biosphere Reserve, China

Mao'er Mountain Biosphere Reserve features a mountain landscape of exceptional scenic beauty, with peaks reaching over 2,000 m above sea level.

Designation date: 2011

Photo gallery ǀ  Press release


Regional network: East Asian Biosphere Reserve Network (EABRN)

Ecosystem-based network: 




    Surface : 23,608.5 ha

    • Core area(s): 7,759 ha
    • Buffer zone(s): 9,249.5 ha
    • Tansition zone(s): 6,600 ha

    Location: 25°44'-25°58'N - 110°19'-110°31'E

    Administrative authorities

    Guangxi Mao’er Mountain National Nature Reserve Authority
    Guili, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, 541316

    Tel.: +86 773 605 9106


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    Ecological Characteristics

    Mao’er Mountain Natural Reserve is located in the northeast Guilin in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region with a total coverage of 17,008.5 hectares. It targets the conservation of a primary subtropical evergreen broad-leaved forest ecosystem, nationally protected flora and fauna species, as well as water conservation forest at the source of the Li River. Mao’er Mountain, the highest peak in Nanling and, indeed in South China, is 2,141.5 meters above sea level.

    Mao’er Mountain is abundant with dense forest vegetation, with a developed surface water system and high water conservation capacity. It is the birthplace of the Li River, the Zi River and the Xun River, and connects with the Yangtze River and Pearl River. Besides, the forest marsh wetland within the subtropical evergreen deciduous and broad-leaved mixed forest in Bajiaotian of Mao’er Mountain is unique.

    The reserve is located in the transition zone between maritime and continental climate, which can be indentified as humid mid-subtropical mountainous monsoon climate. The reserve is situated in the transition part from middle subtropical zone to south subtropical zone, while in terms of vegetation division, it would belong to the transition zone between montane castanopsis schima limestone forest and Nanling castanopsis altingia chinensis forest in the three-parallel rivers of subtropical evergreen broad-leaved forest zone, eastern humid broad-leaved forest subzone, and mid-subtropical evergreen broad-leaved forest south subzone. Due to the impact of topography, the reserve boasts diverse vegetation types, a completely developed vertical belt, profuse forest landscapes, and various rare species such as Fagus longipetiolata, Abies ziyuanensis, Tsuga chinensis var. tchekiangensis, Tsuga longibracteata, and Pinus kwangtungensis are well preserved here.


    Socio-economic characteristics

    There are about 60,000 people in the transition zone of Mao’er Mountain Nature Reserve, involving three adjacent counties. The majority are Han Chinese, supplemented by Miao, Yao, Zhuang, Dong, Yi, and Hui minorities, in which the Miao and Yao groups account for a large share.






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    Last updated: July 2019