A Guide to the Mammals of China.
544 Seiten, 61 Farbtafeln, 556 Verbreitungskarten.
Princeton university Press. ISBN: 9780691099842.
China is a magnificent country and one of the most diverse on Earth. Its size ranks fourth among the world’s nations (9,596,960 km2), and it is home to over 1.3 billion people. The topography of China ranges from the highest elevation on Earth (Mt. Everest or Chomolung ma; 8,850 m) to one of the lowest (Turpan Pendi; 154 m below sea level). Chinese environments include some of Earth’s most extensive and driest deserts (the Taklimakan and Gobi) and its highest plateau (the Tibetan Plateau or “Roof of the World”). Habitats range from tropical to boreal forest, and from extensive grasslands to desert. This wide variety of habitats has contributed greatly to the richness of China’s mammal fauna. Additionally, the geographic location of China, at the suture zone between the Palaearctic and Indo-Malayan biogeographic regions (Hoffmann 2001), further contributes to the country’s mammal diversity. Overall, more than 10 percent of the world’s species of mammal live in China (556/5,416; total count from Wilson and Reeder 2005). Twenty percent (109/556) of China’s mammals are endemic, and one of these is among the most recognizable of the world’s mammals, the Giant Panda. In their analysis of megadiversity countries, Mittermeier et al. (1997) consider China to have the third highest diversity of mammals among all countries (following Brazil and Indonesia).