Skip to main content
  • Date:2022-07-06

Hapen Nature Reserve is part of the state-owned forest that straddles the Taipei-Ilan border. It is located within the villages of Fushan in Taipei County and Huhsi in Ilan County, and makes up zones 5 and 6 of the TFRI Fushan experimental forest. The nature reserve covers 333 hectares of forest between 400m and 1030m above sea level, with a warm, humid climate. It well preserves the natural forest ecosystem of northern Taiwan.

Most of the reserve is old growth forest. This tropical hardwood forest is mainly a mix of laurel and beech. A huge number of plant and animal species are represented. Staffs from the Fushan research center regularly patrol the reserve, checking for illegal logging, fires, hunting or fishing.

Fushan Botanical Garden is very close by, so to ensure that the reserve is not affected by any non-natural projects, there is a buffer zone around it. No commercial activities are permitted in the buffer zone, and footpaths that used to go through the reserve are now diverted around it through the buffer. Even hikers are asked not to enter the reserve, to make sure that its ecosystem remains untouched.

  • Date:2022-07-06

Kenting Uplifted Coral Reef Nature Reserve located in the southern tip of the Hengchun peninsula, and managed by Hengchun research center of TFRI. It covers 137 hectares in area, and 200-300m above sea level.

The area’s climate is clearly divided into dry and wet seasons. According to data collected by the Hengchun Weather Station, Central Weather Bureau, in the years between 2000 and 2010, the average annual precipitation is 2,000 mm. About 87% of the rainfall occurs between June and November due to Mei-Yu season and typhoons, while the months of October to April are drier with strong northeast monsoon (so-called katabatic wind). The mean annual temperature is 25.4°C and the difference between the average temperature of the coldest and hottest months is small, from 20.9°C in January to 28.4°C in August. On average, 2.3 typhoons invaded the Hengchun Peninsula every year from 1897 to 2007 (Data source: Central Weather Bureau), and the forests and vegetation covers had often suffered mechanical damage and heavy rainfall.

Reserve ecosystem.

The Kenting Nature Reserve is the only uplifted coral reef forest ecosystem on Taiwan that remains unspoiled. 538 species of vascular plant, representing 127 families, have been recorded. The most important species are woody plants from the Euphorbiaceae (spurge), Moraceae (mulberry) and Ebenaceae (persimmon) families. The nature reserve is habitat to many rare species recognized by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN):

  1. Endangered species:Diospyros ferrea, Aristolochia zollingeriana, Diospyros discolor .
  2. Vulnerable species:Allantodia dilatata, Balanophora fungosa, Gonocaryum calleryanum, Gleditsia rolfei, Helminthostachys zeylanica.

The vegetation on the Hengchun peninsula is typical for tropical coastal forest and tropical monsoon forest. A study of Kenting National Park by Su Horng- jye et al. classified the vegetation in nature reserve as Diospyros maritima –Ficus benjamina var. bracteaba forest subtype, a subtype based on persimmon and fig trees. Many species of banyan are represented in nature reserve, as well as many lithophytes: Malaysian persimmon, Drypetes littoralis, Diospyros ferrea, Diospyros discolor, Aglaia formosana, Palaquium formosanum, etc. The trees on top of the coral reef are stunted and bent because of the monsoon winds, but they can grow tall and straight among the reefs.

Surveys of the nature reserve have found four major plant communities associated with different habitats. There is a clear link between the plant communities and landscape features. In sheltered troughs, the community is characterized by Pisonia umbellifera; on raised ground there is a Bischofia javanica (bishop wood)-Palaquium formosanum community; on raised limestone blocks Drypetes littoralis- Aglaia formosana- Pouteria obovata dominate; and on the flat lands where the old growth forest was disturbed by early human activity, the plant community is characterized by Macaranga tanarius- Melanolepis multiglandulosa- Cryptocarya concinna.

The nature reserve is also home to a range of mammals, including the Formosan rock macaque, gem-faced civet, white-bellied rat, Red-bellied tree squirrel, weasels, Sika deer, and Formosan wild boar. Eight species of bat have been recorded: Schreibers's long-fingered bat, Formosan lesser horseshoe bat, woolly horseshoe bat, Taiwanese leaf-nosed bat, East Asian Tailless Leaf-Nosed Bat, Formosan mouse-eared bat, Formosan tube-nosed bat, and serotine bat. 32 species of bird have been found, from 20 families/ sub-families. The most common species in this area are the black bulbul, gray-cheeked fulvetta, and black-browed barbet; almost as common are the Taiwanese bulbul, streak-breasted scimitar-babbler, and black-naped monarch.