Audio Book News: July 2010 Archives

More Species on the Brink

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Yet another species, sadly perhaps destined to appear in a future episode of Rockford's Rock Opera musical story for the iPod Touch, iPhone and now, the iPad.

A new survey has revealed that finless porpoises, a rare type of toothed whale living in the coastal waters of Asia, are more endangered than previously thought.

Scientists say there are two species of the creature in Asia and that they rarely intermingle, the BBC reported.

They have also warned that the ones living in the freshwater of China's Yangtze river are genetically unique and should be protected from extinction.

"The most surprising finding of this study is that the Yangtze finless porpoise represents a distinct genetic grouping, which is distinct from marine porpoises," Professor Guang Yang of China's Nanjing Normal University said.

According to the study published in the journal of Marine Biology, each population of finless porpoise is distinct with significant implications for their conservation and survival.

A group of Chinese and British researchers found that freshwater porpoises should be especially managed and conserved separately.

"The freshwater nature of this population makes it unique," Yang explained.

Scientists, however, are not sure whether the Yangtze finless porpoise should be granted species status.

"The most recent field survey conducted in 2006 suggested that there were around 1,000 individuals in the Yangtze River," Yang said.

"This is much smaller than previous estimates, suggesting a significant population decline in the past two decades."

The Yangtze River is the site of the first recorded extinction of a cetacean (whale, dolphins and porpoises), including the Baiji, a species of river dolphin.

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This page is a archive of entries in the Audio Book News category from July 2010.

Audio Book News: May 2010 is the previous archive.

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