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Eco-echo Ecological Conservation Hope Project

The Sauter's Frog (Rana sauteri) Habitat Conservation Project

This is how the story began. 

The Dashanbei area of Hengshan Township, Hsinchu County, is home to many lush, natural ecologies. The Sauter’s Frog (Rana sauteri) is a unique local species that lives in the mountains, forests, and creeks of the region. When mating season arrives in October, the frogs will emerge from their hidden habitats, cross roads and rivers, find a mate, and lay their eggs. However, the cars on the roads often kill large numbers of these poor frogs during their mating migration. The Hsinchu Branch of the Society of Wilderness (SOW) has carried out many in-situ observations, environmental surveys, and ecological tours. In a study carried out in October 2008, the SOW found that over 100 frogs are accidentally killed daily while crossing the roads. Such figures could lead to an irreversible collapse of the frog population and this is why the SOW immediately established a frog protection task force, recruiting volunteers to “help the frogs cross the streets” and get them safely to the other side. UMC began working with the SOW in July 2014 in The Sauter’s Frog (Rana sauteri) Habitat Conservation Project. It is hoped that human intervention and conservation efforts could help sustain the natural ecologies of the Dashanbei region. This Conservation Project was supported by a fund established by UMC after conducting the first carbon trading transaction in Taiwan. The Project would focus on the 2 major dimensions of ecological conservation and ecological education to provide long-term care and protection for Taiwan's local ecologies.

Project Outcome

Training of frog conservation volunteers

During the 2014-2016 project period, UMC trained 16 volunteers in frog protection, totaling 96 hours. The training was also extended to the community and community volunteers, and a total of nearly 4,000 volunteers were trained.

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Training workshop

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Training workshop

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Volunteers

 

Ecological surveys

Professor Chuang Mingfeng from Tonghai University was appointed to study the spawning grounds of the Sauter's Frog and record the physical environmental factors at various spawning sites, including the time and space distribution of the spawning, and the water temperature, water level, acidity, conductivity, dissolved oxygen, distance from land, and presence or absence of stones. Information on these environmental factors are used to assess the conditions of the spawning environment of the Sauter's Frog and provide reference for creating or maintaining suitable spawning ground in the conservation effort.

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Spawning sites

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Environmental factors evaluation

 

Habitat conservation

On April 22, 2015 World Earth Day, 60 employees were called to respond to habitat conservation.

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Habitat conservation

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Habitat conservation

 

In 2015, together with The Society of Wilderness, 198 volunteers built a 200m ecological stone ditch to preserve the wealth of local natural resources.

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Preserve the wealth of local natural resources

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Ecological stone ditch

 

In 2016, working holiday volunteer activities were organized to continue habitat maintenance.

Working holiday volunteer

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Working holiday volunteer

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Habitat maintenance

 

Help the frogs cross the road

October is breeding season for the Sauter's Frog. Since 2015, together with The Society of Wilderness Hsinchu Branch, the Frog Crossing event has been held each year to protect the frogs. The personal involvement of employees, their families and the community increased their awareness of frogs and ecology, helped them understand the importance of ecological conservation, and jointly put into practice environmental education.

Every year, a total of 42 peoples participated, and through our colleagues' actual experience, care and participation, it has been transformed into a positive force, making the ecological environment better.

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Help the frogs cross the road

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Help the frogs cross the road

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The Sauter's frog

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The Sauter's frog

 

 

Liu Yueh-Mei The Society of Wilderness - Director of the Hsinchu Branch

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