設專門武裝部隊 玻利維亞立法保護亞馬遜江豚 | 環境資訊中心

設專門武裝部隊 玻利維亞立法保護亞馬遜江豚

2012年09月27日
摘譯自2012年9月24日ENS玻利維亞,拉巴斯報導;沈瑞筠編譯;蔡麗伶審校

玻利維亞莫拉萊斯總統在特立尼達簽署江豚保護法案(照片由Reynaldo Zaconeta拍攝,總統辦公室提供)玻利維亞總統莫拉萊斯(Evo Morales)已簽署新的法案,保護玻利維亞的亞馬遜江豚,不僅聲明江豚是玻利維亞自然遺產,並指派該國武裝部隊來保護此稀有物種。他表示,「保護全玻利維亞的動物是我們的責任。武裝部隊有助於環境保育。」

莫拉萊斯18日在貝尼省(Beni Department)首府特立尼達(Trinidad)舉行的儀式中公布江豚保護法案(Bufeo Protection Act)。貝尼省有數條亞馬遜河的支流縱橫其間,除了有亞馬遜江豚棲息,還有超過400種魚類。

玻利維亞的江豚是亞馬遜淡水豚的三個亞種之一。這些亞馬遜淡水豚,當地人用稱之為boto、boutu或粉紅河豚,西班牙語稱為bufeo。

玻利維亞的粉紅河豚是世上最大的淡水豚之一。平均而言,雄性身長約為2.55公尺、體重介於160-180磅間;雌性體長約為2.16公尺,體重接近100公斤。

由於臉頰較大,而阻礙這些江豚向下的視野。科學家們推測這或許是他們常被觀察到倒立游泳的原因。亞馬遜淡水豚游速緩慢,通常單獨或成對出現,只有在乾季才會觀察到為數10-15隻群體出現。

亞馬遜淡水豚(照片由Linda de Volder拍攝)

新的法律禁止蓄意獵殺江豚,蓄意獵殺是目前牠們生存面臨的最大威脅。漁業行為對牠們是主要的威脅,目前捕獵江豚已是違法行為。

雖然在多數地區不具合法性,炸魚在亞馬遜流域的某些地區仍很常見。爆炸的衝擊會對江豚產生影響,且漁夫會獵殺覓食被炸昏或炸死的魚的江豚。

其他威脅包括非法採金礦排出的汞污染、水壩的興建及摧毀牠們棲息水域的沖蝕。

鯨豚保育協會江豚保育計畫領導人Alison Wood表示:「我們祝賀莫拉萊斯總統採取的保育行動。他以玻利維亞這些珍貴的江豚為榮且關注牠們的未來。」

「我們也敦促玻利維亞政府解決其他這些江豚面臨的威脅,包括國家北部水壩的興建、贊助鯨豚保育協會的亞馬遜淡水豚專家Enzo Aliaga-Rossel多年對保育江豚的貢獻。」

亞馬遜淡水豚過去名列國際自然保護聯盟紅皮書中瀕危與易危的物種;目前因有限的現況資料列為「數據不足」(Data Deficient)。

在有進行亞馬遜淡水豚研究的區域,世界自然保育聯盟(IUCN)表示,「牠們看起來分佈廣泛且相對豐富,」然而,「這些研究區域只涵蓋總族群的一小部分,只反映了少數受保護亞馬遜淡水豚的處境。」

Bolivian President Protects Amazon Pink River Dolphins
LA PAZ, Bolivia, September 24, 2012 (ENS)

 President Evo Morales has signed into law a measure to safeguard Bolivia’s Amazon pink river dolphin and assigned the country’s armed forces to protect the rare species.

“It is our duty to protect animal species from all over Bolivia. The Armed Forces will contribute to environmental conservation,” said President Morales, after signing the law that declares the dolphin to be part of Bolivia’s Natural Heritage.

President Morales issued the Bufeo Protection Act on September 18 at a ceremony in Trinidad, the capital of Beni Department in the country’s northeast. Beni is criss-crossed by numerous rivers, all tributaries of the Amazon, which are inhabited not only by the Amazon river dolphin but also by over 400 species of fish.

Bolivian river dolphins are one of three subspecies of Inia geoffrensis, known scientifically as I.g. boliviensis.

Known as bufeo in Spanish, these freshwater mammals are known in English as boto, boutu, pink river dolphin in addition to being called Amazon River dolphin.

Bolivia’s pink river dolphin is one of the largest river dolphins. On average, males measure up to 2.55 meters in length and can weigh 160 to 180 pounds, while females grow up to 2.16 meters and can weigh close to 100 kilograms.

These dolphins have large cheeks which may obstruct their downward vision. Scientists speculate that this may be the reason they are often seen swimming upside down. Amazon pink river dolphins are slow swimmers and are usually seen alone or in pairs, except during the dry season when they gather in groups of 10 to 15 animals.

The new law bans deliberate killing, the most serious threat to Amazon river dolphins. A major threat to their survival is fishing and it is now illegal to catch them.

Fishing with explosives, although illegal in most areas, is common in some areas of the Amazon Basin. This fishing technique threatens the dolphins due to the concussive effects of explosions. Fishermen have been known to kill dolphins that are attracted to prey on the stunned or dead fish.

Other threats include pollution from mercury used in illegal gold mining, dam construction and erosion, which destroys their river habitat.

Alison Wood, river dolphin conservation lead at the UK-based Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society said, “We congratulate President Morales on taking these steps. He is right to be proud of Bolivia’s very own precious river dolphin and be concerned about its future.”

“We would also urge the Bolivian government to address the other threats that these dolphins still face including the construction of dams in the north of the country and to support WDCS’s Bolivian river dolphin expert, Enzo Aliaga-Rossel, in his efforts to protect Bolivian river dolphins,” said Wood.

The species was previously listed as Vulnerable to extinction on the IUCN Red List of Threatened but is now considered Data Deficient due to the limited amount of current information available on threats, ecology, and population numbers and trends.

In areas where pink river dolphins have been studied, the IUCN says “they appear widespread and relatively abundant.” However, “these areas represent only a small proportion of the species’ total range and often are places where the dolphins have some protection.”

※ 全文及圖片詳見:ENS

作者

蔡麗伶(LiLing Barricman)

In my healing journey and learning to attain the breath awareness, I become aware of the reality that all the creatures of the world are breathing the same breath. Take action, here and now. From my physical being to the every corner of this out of balance's planet.