Locating in the Sichuan province, the Wolong Natural Reserve covers a part of the southeast Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture and the southeast side of the Qionglai Mountain. It has natural dividing lines like hillcrests and rivers as its boundaries. Its geographic coordinate is 102o52'~103o24'east longitude and 30o45'~31o25' northern latitude. It has a length of 53 kilometer from the east to the west and a width of 62 kilometer from the south to the north, covering 200,000 hectare. The highest mount in the reserve is the Siguniang (Four Girls) Mount which has an altitude of 6,250 meters; but in the east part, the the Mujiangping Mount has an mere altitude 1.250 meters, 5000 meters lower than the Siguniang Mount.
Belong to the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau Climatic Belt, the Wolong Natural Reserve undergoes very small temperature change through the year. However, different seasons have very different degrees of humidity and the rainfall amount is very concentrated in the reserve. Besides, the climate varies apparently at different altitudes. According to the long-term observation of the meteorological station at Shawan of Wolong, the highest temperature and lowest temperature are respectively 29.8oC and 11.7oC, 8.9oC in average. The average yearly rainfall amount is 888.0 millimeter while the average yearly evaporation capacity is 883.1 millimeter. The yearly relative humidity is 80%. The rainfall of the reserve concentrates in the months between May and August, and the yearly sunshine duration is 949.2 hours.
In the reserve, the horizontal distribution of vegetation is in the class of subtropical broadleaved forest. In terms of vertical distribution, the vegetation displays an obvious altitudinal band spectrum according to change of altitude and hydrothermal condition.
With peculiar geographical conditions, complicated relief types, beautiful and diversified landscapes, and comfortable climate, the Wolong Natural Reserve integrates precipitous mountains, beautiful and clean rivers and springs, forests and caves into an united whole. In the reserve, you will not only have a glimpse of its biological diversity, the peculiar cultures of the Tibetan nationality and the Qiang nationality, but will also experience the grand and magical landscapes that Nature has endowed to Wolong. In the reserve, there are large-scale breeding bases for giant pandas, red pandas, golden monkeys and other rare animals listed in the national protected animals. Besides, the world-known observing station in the wild "May 1 Station" is also located there.
The Establishment and Development of natural reserves for the giant panda