Hidden treasure of asia－Taiwan’s endemic natural ecology
Taiwan is a miniature version of the northern hemisphere ecosystems and a Noah's Ark for ancient creatures (please refer to annotation 1)
The upheaval of the ancient island of Taiwan from the sea was the result of the prolonged extrusion of the Eurasian Plate and the Pacific Plate which took place tens of millions of years ago. After that, the earth was confronted by many ice ages, leading to the expansion of glacier land and the recession of the sea level until it was 200m lower than it is today. The 80-meter-deep Taiwan Strait naturally became visible, and thus Taiwan was filled with countless valuable ancient creatures that migrated to the island during that period. Starting from the end of the last ice age, these creatures have been living in the thriving forest ecosystems of Taiwan up until the present day.
Taiwan is one of the major countries of biodiversity in the world. It has the northernmost distribution of Indian barringtonia which grows in tropical coastal forests, and the southernmost distribution of fir, the plant that grows closest to the arctic circle. It also boasts Hynobius fuca and Formosan landlocked salmon, species from the north. Apart
from being the most valuable ecological treasures of Taiwan, they are also witnesses to the changes in the Earth's climate.
Taiwan is a country which possesses all of the northern hemisphere forest types. The number of varieties of vascular plants, ferns, butterflies and birds comes out on top compared to the rest of the world. In addition to their large number of species, the ratio of endemic species of land vertebrates is also impressively high. A rich and diverse ecological environment is the basis for the proliferation of a wide variety of flora and fauna. The uniqueness and beauty of Taiwan is perceived and highlighted thanks to its abundance and a great diversity of wildlife. Don’t forget to slow down while wandering the forest trails; perhaps you will chance upon Swinhoe's Pheasant, the Mikado Pheasant or other endemic bird species!
Annotation 1: the special
geological location of Taiwan had made it the easternmost country where ancient creatures migrated and the southernmost and northernmost country where creatures from the frigid zone
and the tropical zone subsisted during ice ages; thus, it is named the Noah's Ark for ancient creatures. The precipitation and low temperature brought by the northeast monsoon plus the variation in alpine temperatures have made Taiwan a miniature ecosystem of the northern hemisphere. For this reason, Taiwan offers prolific biological diversity within the shortest distance and the minimum range.