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White dolphin now extinct

Posted on Sunday, December 17 2006 @ 10:15:31 CET by


Scientists report a rare Yangtze River dolphin is now extinct after 20 million years:
The white dolphin known as baiji, shy and nearly blind, dates back some 20 million years. Its disappearance is believed to be the first time in a half-century, since hunting killed off the Caribbean monk seal, that a large aquatic mammal has been driven to extinction.

A few baiji may still exist in their native Yangtze habitat in eastern China but not in sufficient numbers to breed and ward off extinction, said August Pfluger, the Swiss co-leader of the joint Chinese-foreign expedition.

"We have to accept the fact, that the Baiji is functionally extinct. We lost the race," Pfluger said in a statement released by the expedition. "It is a tragedy, a loss not only for China, but for the entire world. We are all incredibly sad."
The main reason for the white dolphin's decline are overfishing and shipping traffic. More details at CNN.


 



 

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