Zigui Agro-ecological Monitoring and Research Station is located in the Shuitianbar town, Zigui County of Yichang City, Hubei Province, with latitude of 3103.53 N, longitude of 1100 40.55E, about 4km from the main watercourse of the Yangtse River. It lies in the northern subtropical region, and the climate there is warm in winter due to the particular terrain. Continental monsoon brings with the plenty rainfall and sufficient heat resources for the grain and fruit cultivation. Vertical and horizontal environment variation has caused the biological and ecological diversifications. However, irrational hillside development has brought with the over development of the hillside and disturbed the ecological equilibrium in the mountainous lands with high density of population, hillside soil and nutrients losses and even the geological disaster seriously affected the social and economic development and the environmental protection.
Strive to the rational and efficient hillside development and environmental protection for the Three Gorge Reservoir area, the station is facilitated with run-off plots of various land covers in the region and other experimental equipments, carrying out the ecological monitoring and the hillside agriculture research in the front of the Three Gorges reservoir area, and is committed to serving the people of the Three Gorges area through vital, basic and applied research in the areas of agriculture, environment and natural resources, supported by the Three Gorges Engineering and the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
The current themes of the station in monitoring and research covers:
1) Optimization of hillside agricultural models for high efficiency and environmental protection in the belts of the Three Gorges Reservoir region at different sea levels.
2) The mechanism of soil erosion and nutrients losses under different vegetations and the countermeasures for soil fertilization and soil fixation.
3) Water and nutrients transference in the soil-crop continuum and the efficient use of water and fertilizer for high benefit.
4) Hillside ecological agriculture, and the social and economic development.
5) Integrated technologies for non-contaminated agriculture in the belts of the Three Gorges Reservoir region.
6) Monitoring on the eco-environmental changes, such as the change of the regional climate due to the water store in the Three Gorges Reservoir region, the hillside land use and the quality of the eco-environment
7) Monitoring on the status of social and economic development, the environmental protection result from the emigration in the Three Gorges Reservoir area.