Preparations for construction of the Liangzihu National Station of Lake Ecosystem (hereinafter referred to as “the station”) began in 1995 on the Niushaju islet of Liangzi in Ezhou, Hubei. The station now covers 134mu of land, 500mu of water, and is affiliated with Wuhan University. The station is a key station in the research network for China’s ecosystem, and a national field station for observing and studying ecosystem and environment. The station focuses its research on aquatic organisms and especially aquatic plants. It has systematically studied the structure and functions of Liangzi Lake’s aquatic ecosystem, the biocenosis of aquatic organisms in the water-land ecotone, the water environmental background value, and the interrelations between aquatic plants, animals, and microorganisms; the impact of flood on aquatic plants in the lake; and how aquatic organisms respond to UV-B radiation and the increase of CO2 concentration.
Yu Dan, head of the National Field Station for the Lake Ecosystem of Liangzi Lake, is a PhD graduate, a professor, and a doctoral advisor; she majors in aquatic plants. She is also a standing director of the Ecological Society of China, a member of the Wetland Ecology Sub-committee of the Ecological Society of China, a member of the Plant Ecology Sub-Committee of the Botanical Society of China, a member of the editorial board of the Acta Hydrobiologica Sinica and Chinese Journal of Applied Ecology, and a standing member of the editorial board of the Chinese Journal of Plant Ecology and Biodiversity. Yu was granted the Second Prize of Science and Technology Progresses Award by the State Education Commission in 1987 and the “Excellent Teachers Prize” of Baosteel Education Award in 1998. In June, 2009, Yu was awarded the title of national advanced individual for field science and technology. Currently, researchers at the station include one professor, two associate professors, one visiting professor (from the US), two with intermediate certificates of title, one post-doctoral graduate, and seven support staff.
The station also trains Master’s degree candidates and PhD candidates in botany, zoology, and ecology for the School of Life Sciences. It is a base for the biology postdoctoral research station of Wuhan University. It has trained 22 PhD candidates and 17 Master’s degree candidates, of whom 4 are promoted to professors, 2 are assistant professors (American), 16 are promoted to associate professors, 7 are PhD students, and 10 are Master’s degree students. The station has undertaken 35 major research projects worth over 20 million yuan, and has 128 papers published with 72 papers published in international SCI journals. The station was awarded the title of advanced collectives for national field science and technology at the first national conference on field science and technology on June 16, 2009. At the 2010 preparatory conference for “a project to develop, demonstrate, and promote technology for the ecological security of lakes and reservoirs” under the phase III program for investigating ecological security and evaluating key national lakes and reservoirs, the Liangzi Lake was selected to be a part of this project as it represents a successful restoration of water quality and is promoted nationwide as a positive example of ecological security. Ling Jiang, deputy director-general at the Department of Pollution Prevention and Control, MEP (Ministry of Environmental Protection), China, highly appreciated the work of the station. Liangzi Lake boasts the most intensive protection, most successful ecological restoration, and best water quality in China. The experiences in the ecological management of Liangzi Lake are worth demonstrating and promoting nationwide.