Environmental Biology of Fishes

, Volume 96, Issue 10–11, pp 1229–1243 | Cite as

Fish fauna, biogeography and conservation of freshwater fish in Poyang Lake Basin, China

  • Liang Liang Huang
  • Zhi Qiang Wu
  • Jian Hua Li


A checklist of the fish of Poyang Lake Basin based on an extensive survey and literature review is presented. A total of 220 species and subspecies belonging to12 orders, 27 families and 100 genera, have been recorded. Of these, 131 species are endemic to China. Based on cluster analysis with presence-absence data, freshwater ecosystems in Jiangxi Province are divided into two regions, the Xunwushui River region and the region of Poyang Lake. The Xunwushui River flows into the Pearl River, whereas the region of Poyang Lake flows into the Yangtze River. The fish fauna and evolution of the fish fauna in Poyang Lake Basin owes much to geological events and belongs to the Oriental Region, South-east Asiatic sub-region and East China area. Anthropogenic activities including habitat alteration, overfishing, pollution and soil erosion have severely reduced the fish biodiversity in Poyang Lake Basin. River modifications (i.e. dam construction and sand excavation) and heavy metal pollution are the most significant threats to fish diversity and ecosystem functioning in the majority of the river systems in the province. To protect fish diversity and fisheries more effectively in Poyang Lake Basin, law enforcement should be strengthened, and the following measures could be introduced: restocking economically important fish species; establishing fish sanctuaries and freshwater protected areas, ordering a close season and developing sustainable aquaculture.


Fish fauna Biogeography Conservation Freshwater Poyang Lake 



The study was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 30760188) and Natural Science Foundation in Jiangxi Province (No. 226). We are grateful to Hanlin Wu (Shanghai Ocean University, China) for his help in fish identification and Gary Grant (Member of Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management, 6–8 Cole Street, London SE1 4YH, UK for improving the English text and two anonymous reviewers for their helpful and insightful comments on our manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Liang Liang Huang
    • 1
  • Zhi Qiang Wu
    • 2
  • Jian Hua Li
    • 1
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Yangtze River Water Environment, Ministry of Education, College of Environmental Science and EngineeringTongji UniversityShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.College of Environmental Science and EngineeringGuilin University of TechnologyGuilinPeople’s Republic of China

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