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SHANXI, March 6, Chinadaily -- Shanxi Wildlife Conservation Association and Shanxi Forestry and Grassland Administration launched a voluntary event for the protection of wild birds in Taiyuan on March 3, which also marked the sixth World Wildlife Day.

During the voluntary event, a series of activities themed around bird protection were organized.

"We have held 'Bird Week' events for 37 times in succession and organized various wildlife protection promotional events on special days for the environment and wildlife, attracting wide attention and public participation," said Zhu Jun, secretary general of the Shanxi Wildlife Conservation Association.

In recent years, bird lovers in Shanxi have gathered and formed a volunteer team to assist professionals in field patrols and the promotion of science, playing an important role in the protection of birds.

In addition, 43 epidemic disease monitoring sites have been established across Shanxi and 24-hour patrols are carried out to protect birds. The rescue and breeding of rare and endangered birds – including brown eared pheasants, black storks and bustards – and the release of wild animals have been conducted.

"The number of swans in Pinglu county in Yuncheng city exceeded 13,000 in autumn and winter last year, reaching a record high," added Zhu.

"More wild bird species, that are as rare as giant pandas, have appeared in reservoirs and wetlands across Shanxi."

The province has successfully enhanced its ecological restoration and protection for years in order to conserve biodiversity, with the area being converted to forested land now exceeding 2,666 square kilometers.

Currently, forests in Shanxi province cover 32,100 sq km, with a forest coverage rate of 20.50 percent. It is estimated that the wetlands cover a total area of 723 sq km, with 46.90 percent of the wetlands in Shanxi under protection.

The improved forest and wetland environment has provided good habitats for wildlife, especially birds. There are an estimated 330 varieties of birds, 79 kinds of other wildlife, 13 species of amphibians, 29 kinds of reptiles and 2,743 species of wild plants across Shanxi.

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Shanxi Wildlife Conservation Association and Shanxi Forestry and Grassland Administration launch a voluntary event for the protection of wild birds in Taiyuan, on March 3. [Photo/sxgov.cn]

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Volunteers look on, at the launch ceremony for the wild birds protection event in Taiyuan. [Photo/sxgov.cn]

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