He took the baby, who had only been born for about six hours, from a hospital in Gaozhou, Guangdong province last Friday and placed her in a nylon bag before flinging her into the woods, Chinese media reported.
However, the girl miraculously survived for 12 hours after landing on some tree branches and was saved by rescuers.
According to local media, a health center in Magui township reported to the police that one of the newborns under its care had vanished in the morning of Oct. 26.
The infant’s father, who was noticed to be acting suspiciously, revealed what actually happened after he was questioned by officers.
He reportedly told investigators that he had stuffed his daughter into a bag and snuck her out of the hospital at around 1 a.m.
Li admitted that he brought her outside of town and threw her at a remote cliff, Shanghaiist reports. The authorities then instructed Li to bring them to the area where he tossed the infant.
At around 11 a.m., the officers, along with local volunteers, began searching for the child in the steep cliff and the wilderness below it.
Two hours in on their search, the rescuers suddenly heard a faint cry which eventually led them to the child behind the thick brush.
The baby, which apparently survived the fall by landing in some soft vegetation, was found about a hundred feet down from the cliff’s edge.
The blanket she was wrapped in and the snakeskin bag she was stuffed into also helped her make it through the cold night.
Li, who has since been arrested by police, explained that he was hoping to raise another son since he already had two daughters and one son.
The baby girl is reportedly now safe under the mother’s care.