China Explanation Contest for Science Popularization of Forestry and Grassland, the theme of which was “Human and nature coexist and jointly build beautiful China”, was held in Wuhan Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences on May 30-31, 2019. 55 contestants, recommended by departments of and departments directly under National Forestry and Grassland Administration, scientific research institutions, and colleges and universities, entered the contest. They came from 49 institutions including nature reserves, colleges and universities, zoos, museums, and botanical gardens of 22 provinces and regions. After fierce competition, Mi Hongxu from Hainan Yinggeling National Nature Reserve, Han Xinyang from Shanxi Guandishan Forestry and Grassland Bureau, and Hua Yulang from Shenyang Agricultural University won the first prize, and they will, on behalf of National Forestry and Grassland Administration, take part in the 2019 China Explanation Contest for Science Popularization of Forestry and Grassland sponsored by Ministry of Science and Technology.
This contest, sponsored by National Forestry and Grassland Administration, organized by Chinese Society of Forestry, and co-organized by Wuhan Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, includes preliminary competition and finals which consists of two sections of independent proposition and random proposition. In the section of 4-minutes long independent proposition, contestants brought a marvelous feast of science popularization which featured nature science and technological knowledge of forestry, grassland, wetland and desert for the public by integrating movie and animation, multimedia demonstration and physical display, and studio theater. In the section of 2-minutes long random proposition, contestants randomly draw a topic from 20 topics, including topics on Chang'e-4 lunar probe, energy conservation law, micro-plastics, and laid out it in detail, which demonstrated their scientific and technological literacy, know-how capacity and acting ability according to circumstances.
“Symbiotic mushroom knows how to be grateful, while parasitic mushroom knows how to be ungrateful”, said Mi Hongxu from Hainan Yinggeling National Nature Reserve. Mi introduced several ways in which mushrooms gain nutrition to show the public how mushrooms make use of discarded things. “Are the red head of a red-crowned crane and Hedinghong(a kind of poison) the same?” asked Sun Rongjian from Jiangsu Yancheng National Nature Reserve of Rare Birds. Sun started her topic with the poison Hedinghong which was frequently mentioned in movies and TV dramas and Kung Fu novels, explained why red-crowned crane has a red head, and clarified the relationship between Hedinghong and red-crowned crane, and enhanced the public’s knowledge about red-crowned crane. “It is wildly acknowledged that Shanxi has beautiful scenes” said Han Xinyang from Shanxi Guandishan Forestry and Grassland Bureau. Han introduced brown-eared pheasants which are first class national protected animals and other grassland resources to the public. Han was naturally confident and her speech was vivid, fully demonstrating profiles of popularizer of science from forestry and grassland department.
The contest is scientific and interesting, during which various questions were raised, such as how do dinosaurs extinct? How does Tibet Plateau grow high? How does beaver, the natural architect, build exquisite dams and nests？How do rainforest plants survive? Contestants explained a lot of scientific knowledge with vivid and interesting description and displayed the endless charm of science. The contest is exciting, during which contestants showed the process of ecological development with more blue sky, greener mountains and more limpid water, and unfolded a beautiful scroll of harmony between man and nature through telling stories, from the great discovery of artemisinin to the magic transformation of Mu Us Desert to oasis, from “Forest Rehabilitation Plan” to “Enrich People with Apricot”. It’s a poetic contest, during which contestants showed the public picturesque views such as red-crowned cranes strolling and singing on the wetland in Yancheng, Jiangsu Province, the early morning of China Water Tower with beautiful water and grass, and tumbling river, charmingly naive pandas, combative brown-eared pheasants, beautiful golden pheasants, and the uncanny workmanship of Danxia landform. Following the vivid description, audience were traveling through mountains and rivers, and enjoying the variety and splendor of the beauty of China. During the contest, contestants also acted as spokesman for their home town and presented nature images with city features and regional characteristics.
Expert representatives from Chinese Society of Forestry, China Wildlife Conservation Association, Beijing Museum of Natural History, The National Astronomical Observatories of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and Wuhan Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences were judges for the contest. In the end of the contest, 3 first-prizes, 3 second-prizes, 6 third-prizes, and 12 excellent prizes were given to the contestants. This explanation contest was the first on scientific popularization, aiming to construct a platform for popularizer of science and technology to communicate and learn from each other. As explanation for science popularization is important for science popularization work, the explanation contest improved the spreading ability of forest and grass ecosystem science and enhanced the sustainable and sound development of science popularization of forestry and grassland.