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Sanlian Islets

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These three islets 2.5 nautical miles off Beigan are so close together that their Chinese name means “three linked islets.” Each of the three has its own shape and color, one resembling a lion with a human face, another a giant lion looking backward. A sea-eroded gate shows the mastery of Nature’s handiwork and is a wonder of geology. The islands of Matsu also serve as a way station for the migrating birds of East Asia, and in May of 2000 the Council of Agriculture proclaimed eight unpopulated islands—Shuangzi Reef in Dongyin Township, Baimiao, Zhongdao, Tiejian, and Sanlian Islets in Beigan Township, Jinyu and Liuquan in Nangan Township, and Sheshan in Juguang Township as Taiwan’s 12th national wildlife preserve: the Matsu Islands Tern Refuge.