The Splendid Bailuzhou, Home to Auspicious Egrets
六月 05,2023

After the Waking of Insects, everything comes back to life. As spring is approaching at a brisk pace, the ground is gradually covered by green. In Zengjiazhai Village, Huangqizhai Town, Kaiyuan County-level City, northern Liaoning Province, people are eagerly looking forward to the coming of spring. In their free time, they always stand in their yards, looking up to the sky and expecting blooming flowers and lush grass. More importantly, they are waiting for the coming of their auspicious birds, the egrets.

In March and April every year, this village welcomes flocks of “guests” from the south, the egrets. In recent years, the local people have been taking active actions to close off mountains for afforestation and restore wetlands to expand the habitat of egrets. With the improvement of the eco-environment and considerate care of the local villagers, the population of egrets returning to Bailuzhou is gradually growing and has reached 5000 to 6000 now. In addition, the Bailuzhou Nature Reserve has been established there. The Zengjiazhai Village thus earned another nice name, Bailuzhou (a home island for egrets in Chinese).

Every summer, a beautiful picture of people and egrets living harmoniously together unfolds in the village. For better protection of the egrets, villagers volunteered to organize a bird-protecting team of Party members and cadres, who patrolled the mountains three times a day, in the morning, at noon and in the evening. In the beginning, only Party members and cadres participated in the patrol. Gradually, more and more villagers joined the bird-protecting team and the team kept growing. Now all the villagers, young and old, are members of the team. Whenever they are free, they will go into the mountains and check up on the egrets. Villagers have found out that some lawbreakers tend to poach egrets with nets and other tools in the dark of night. Hence, they will go into the mountains even at night with flashlights to watch over the egrets. No matter how late it is at night, they will go into the mountains to rescue the egrets from danger. Villagers have even acquired the skill of distinguishing various feelings of the egrets by listening to their birdcalls. Through the birdcalls, they can tell whether the birds are happy, angry, in danger or hatching eggs. To prevent illegal poaching, iron railings are installed around the habitat of egrets, enclosing Bailuzhou and forming a safety circle that can prevent egrets from poachers. They have truly lived up to protecting egrets in every aspect.

The villagers refer to egrets as auspicious birds or Fengshui birds (geomancy birds). Lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets. The advent of egrets not only improves the eco-environment but also brings rich financial rewards to the villagers as bird-lovers and shutterbugs flood in every year. Relying on the egrets-related tourist catering industry, wild vegetables such as wild fiddlehead ferns and mushrooms, and organic grains are popular with tourists. The villagers can have more income from working in the village. Therefore, egrets are worthy of the name as the auspicious birds for Zengjiazhai Village. They mobilize all villagers to protect egrets and whoever wants to harm or poach egrets will be the enemy of the whole village.

In order to protect egrets better, villagers are learning how to protect egrets through searching the Internet and reading books. In this way, they can provide better protection and more professional rescue to egrets.

The local wildlife conservation departments also attach great importance to protecting egrets. They organize villagers to learn how to protect egrets on a regular base every year. They screen movies, play videos, train the villagers and visitors on how to take care of egrets, and raise people’s awareness of egret protection. They also issue warnings to poachers, put up slogans about protecting egrets, handle poachers according to law, and dissuade people from poaching.

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