Hong Kong’s iconic pink dolphins in danger of extinction – Population has declined from 158 in 2003 to 62 in 2015Posted by Jim at Thursday, September 17, 2015
By Angel Canales
14 September 2015
(ABC News) – Famous for its pink coloring, the Chinese white dolphin is under threat of extinction in Hong Kong.
Among other things, their shrinking habitat has deprived them of food and shelter, experts say.
“So that’s why it has seriously impacted the number of dolphins in Hong Kong,” Samantha Lee, conservation manager at the World Wildlife Fund in Hong Kong, said.
The number of these distinctive dolphins has decreased along with fewer sightings of young dolphins in Hong Kong waters. Their numbers have declined in Hong Kong’s western waters to 62 today from 158 in 2003, according to environmental group WWF-Hong Kong.
The dolphins served as the official mascot of the 1997 ceremonies marking the handover of Hong Kong’s sovereignty to China from Great Britain, and the animals continue to attract tourists to Hong Kong’s western waters. Located about 37 miles west of Hong Kong, the fishing village of Tai O is a popular spot for dolphin watching where they face most of the threats.
The dolphin population in Hong Kong is declining because of five main factors: habitat loss from coastal development, water pollution, underwater noise pollution, vessel collision, and overfishing. […]
“For the past 20 years there have been more than 7,000 hectares of waters reclaimed [nearly 17,300 acres], and in Tai O more than 2,000 hectares [nearly 5,000 acres] have been reclaimed” for development, Lee said. [more]