Across China: Photographer witnesses improving environment along Yellow River
YINCHUAN, April 2 (Xinhua) -- Over more than a decade, bird photographer Yue Changhong has traveled over 180,000 kilometers and captured more than 500,000 images.
"I like to take pictures of birds in different postures. They show the liveliness and beauty of nature," said Yue, who is from Pingluo County in northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region.
Yue's photos are mostly taken along the banks of the Yellow River, China's second-longest river. The section of the waterway in Ningxia is approximately 400 kilometers, forming lakes and wetlands along the way.
Yue is a regular visitor to these lakes and wetlands, taking photos of birds all year round. In the Tianhewan Yellow River national wetland park in his hometown of Pingluo, Yue has found very rare birds in recent years.
Statistics show that as of March 2021, Ningxia has restored more than 33,000 hectares of lakes and wetlands, and placed over 206,000 hectares of wetlands on the protection list.
"The improving environment has given birds more choice in selecting their habitat," Yue said.
In the Tianhewan Yellow River national wetland park, there are more than 180 bird species.
Yue and his wife often arrive at the wetland before dawn or dusk to wait for a great silhouette shot. In the summer, heat and mosquitoes are their biggest enemies, and in the winter, temperatures can reach minus 20 degrees Celsius.
The couple has even been attacked by wild dogs and once fell into an ice cave. Despite these experiences, Yue feels enriched and satisfied when he posts bird photos on social media and receives likes from his followers.
"I want to record the environmental changes in my hometown. It is a meaningful thing to do," he said.
Over the years, Yue has witnessed locals' care for birds. Forest farm workers prepare food for birds on migration routes, and local residents often report wounded birds to local authorities.
"Humans should give back to nature, which has given us so much," he said.