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Sea Shepherd calls on Rio to protect its dolphins

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archive – Diving NewsSea Shepherd calls on Rio to protect its dolphins

As if Brazil hasn’t got enough on its plate with the Olympic Games, environmental group Sea Shepherd Legal is grabbing the opportunity to hit it with an online petition to save the last remaining Guiana dolphins before they become extinct.

The Guiana dolphin (Sotalia guianensis), known in Brazil as the boto cinza, looks like smaller version of the bottlenose dolphin and lives in small groups from pairs up to 10.

An average of almost 10 are killed monthly through fishing, pollution, depletion of prey and habitat, shipping, and port development in the Bay of Sepetiba in Rio de Janeiro, where the Games are taking place.

Only 800 of the dolphins are said to remain, and Sea Shepherd wants Brazil’s government to act to protect them

“What we are fighting for here is to ensure that the Guiana dolphin doesn’t go the way of Mexico’s vaquita porpoise – a species moments away from extinction due to some of the same threats,” said Sea Shepherd Legal’s Executive Director Catherine Pruett.

Rio de Janeiro’s flag bears its coat of arms supported by two dolphins. “Now, 118 years later, Rio’s Guiana dolphin is in desperate need of its own support,” says Sea Shepherd Legal.

The organisation is collaborating with two local non-governmental bodies and Brazil’s Federal Prosecutors Office in its action – the petition site is here 

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11-Aug-16

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