The carrying capacity of winter geese in Poyang Lake in different hydrological scenarios

Authors: Shaoxia Xia*, Institute of Geographic Science and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Zhujian Meng, Institute of Geographic Science and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Didi Rao, Institute of Geographic Science and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xiubo Yu, Institute of Geographic Science and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Topics: China, Remote Sensing, Geographic Information Science and Systems
Keywords: overwintering geese; carrying capacity; growth curve; hydrological scenarios; Poyang Lake
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 5:00 PM / 6:40 PM
Room: 8217, Park Tower Suites, Marriott, Lobby Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Poyang Lake,a large freshwater floodplain, is one of the most important wintering grounds for geese along East Asian-Australasian Flyway. Wintering geese prefer Carex spp as their main food source whose consequent growth is greatly affected by flooding duration and exposure time of the meadow. Therefore, hydrological condition affects the carrying capacity of the geese through wet meadow growth process.
This study undertook in-situ experiments in autumn growth season of Carex spp and field surveys in geese count and their habitats in Poyang Lake. Combining with remote sensing data and Digital Elevation Models, the distribution pattern of Carex spp suitable for geese feeding is mapped according to the flood recession dates and digital elevation model and we the above ground biomass was modelled using the vegetation index and in-situ experiments data in three hydrological scenarios. Therefrom, the carrying capacity in wintering period was estimated.
The results show that the average biomass of wet year is the highest, which is about 5.7×104t, while it decreased by 12% and 4.4% of those in dry year and the normal year. The carrying capacity of the geese in Poyang Lake in the three hydrological scenarios is all in surplus. In general, the growth process of Carex spp in the normal year and the wet year match the requirements of wintering geese in their peak period better than the wet year. However, the growth process in dry year may even have negative effects on the feeding of geese.

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