Dashanbao, located in the west of Zhaotong City, about 79 kilometers away from the city, is known as the winter habitat of black-necked cranes which are first class national protected animals and endangered species in China. Dashanbao is about 3100 meters above sea level with the annual average temperature of 6.2℃. It covers an area of 19,200 hectares. Every winter, a large number of scientific workers，explorers，tourists and photographers from home and abroad go to Dashanbao, a magical and primitive world, to make exploration and scientific research there, exploring in Dashanbao,
In Dashanbao, there is a broad expanse of mountain wetlands that black-necked cranes inhabit in winter. The mountain wetlands, functioned as the “kidneys” of the earth, provide comprehensive eco-environmental and productive services in terms of flood mitigation, climate control, pollution prevention, soil-erosion reduction, environment beautification, biodiversity maintenance and bio-productivity protection. In early autumn every year, a large number of black-necked cranes migrate to Dashanbao from Tibetan Plateau for the winter. According to the related data, there used to be 32 kinds of cranes in the world. However, only 15 kinds remain at present. Black-necked cranes are the only kind of cranes that live in mountain wetlands. There are all together 5,554 black-necked cranes in the world now, among which 1,300 ones migrate to Dashanbao for the winter every year, accounting for a quarter of the total.
The best time to visit Dashanbao is in autumn and winter, from early August to early October when Dashanbao is heavenly place covered with beautiful flowers and grass. The wind comes with the continuous scent of the grass and wild flowers. At this time of the year, Dashanbao is the paradise of photographers. Near the Tiaodunhe Reservoir and Dahaizi Reservoir, people can enjoy the sight of black-necked cranes in large groups in search of food.