Only in the forests of the upper Yangtze can one find the beloved giant panda, which has been WWF‘s symbol since the organization was formed in 1961. The Yangtze finless porpoise, the only creature of this type in the world, lives solely in the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River, with a wild population smaller than that of the giant panda.
The Yangtze region is home to a stunning array of other wildlife, including the elusive snow leopard and beautiful pheasants in all colors of the rainbow. The region is known to support 378 species of fish, more than 280 species of mammals, 145 species of amphibians, and 166 species of reptiles. The Central Yangtze River and lakes are also known to be important wintering and stopover sites for large numbers of migratory birds, including an estimated 95 percent of the world's Siberian crane population.