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Today’s news: dolphins on the brink of extinction and otters return to the UK

August 19, 2011

Here are some fascinating articles that the humans (and animals ) at Current Instincts are reading today. Did we miss something major? Let us know below or send us an email.

1. Ice shortage sends walruses to land. The melting of Arctic sea ice has driven walruses to land. Even worse? They’re taking refuge on land that has been leased to oil companies. Walruses spend most of their time at sea, but need ice to give birth, nurse their young, and elude predators. The lack of ice is putting walruses at risk. (MSNBC)

The walrus was Paul.

2. Sacred dolphin on brink of extinction. Some people in Cambodia and Laos believe the Irrawaddy dolphin to be sacred. It is now believed there are only 85 of them left and researchers fear they might die out all together. The low numbers in addition to low calf survival rates have the dolphins in a perilous situation. (Discovery News)

3. UK Otter populations rebound two decades after near extinction. Otters can now be found in every county in the United Kingdom, just twenty years after pollution almost wiped them out. After it became illegal to dump chemicals in the river (good idea guys!) the otters made a quick comeback. (Yale 360)

4. Lions flee the scene of their crimes. After lions get their murder on, they don’t stick around. After killing their prey, lions move on to try and find a new hunting spot. Knowing the lions’ habits may help researchers know how to better protect them. (MSNBC)

5. ‘Legal’ trade in tiger skins reopened in China. It’s been reported that the Chinese government has reopened the trade of tiger and leopard skins obtained from supposedly legal sources. Chinese officials claim they will work to combat poaching and smuggling but many are skeptical that they’ll do anything to protect these endangered cats. (Yale 360)

One Comment leave one →
  1. August 20, 2011 12:41 am

    What are the Chinese doing? Are they that desperate for money? I just can’t believe anyone would even think trading in leopard and tiger skins would be a good idea. Once again, a government does something stupid and cruel to animals.

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