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World’s Endangered River Dolphins and Historic Declaration



  Jan 29, 2024

World’s Endangered River Dolphins and Historic Declaration



1. What are the key factors causing the decline in river dolphin populations?

The decline, amounting to 73% since the 1980s, is attributed to unsustainable fishing, hydropower dams, pollution, and habitat loss, exacerbated by climate change effects like droughts.

2. Which countries have adopted the Global Declaration for River Dolphins?

Eleven countries from Asia and South America, including Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Cambodia, Colombia, Ecuador, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Peru, and Venezuela, have adopted the declaration.

3. What is the aim of the Global Declaration for River Dolphins?

The declaration aims to halt the decline of all river dolphin species and increase the populations of the most vulnerable ones through collective conservation efforts.

4. What are the eight pillars of the Global Declaration for River Dolphins?

The pillars include creating protected areas, managing dolphin sites, expanding research, engaging communities, eradicating unsustainable fishing, improving water quality, celebrating World River Dolphin Day, and increasing resources and partnerships.

5. What success stories exist in river dolphin conservation?

Notable successes include the doubling of the Indus river dolphin population in Pakistan and a 23% increase in the Yangtze finless porpoise population in China.

6. What are the surviving species of river dolphin?

The six surviving species are the Amazon, Ganges, Indus, Irrawaddy, Tucuxi, and Yangtze finless porpoise. The Yangtze finless porpoise is the only freshwater porpoise but is included under river dolphins.

7. Why are river dolphins important for ecosystem health?

As top predators, river dolphins are indicators of river health, impacting biodiversity and human communities reliant on these rivers.

8. How do river dolphins impact local communities and economies?

They are vital for sustaining ecosystems that support agriculture, industry, and wildlife, including species like jaguars and tigers, and are crucial for local and indigenous communities.

9. What role do partners play in supporting the Global Declaration for River Dolphins?

Partners like WWF, IUCN, and others contribute to research, awareness, and conservation efforts, forming a collaborative approach to dolphin conservation.

10. How do river dolphins reflect the health of other river-dependent species?

Thriving dolphin populations indicate healthy rivers, which in turn support diverse freshwater fish populations and land-based species, contributing to overall ecosystem health. SRIRAM’s


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