|An illustration o the baiji|
|Size compared tae an average human|
Zhou, Qian & Li, 1978
|Natural range of the baiji|
The baiji (Cheenese: 白鱀豚; pinyin: báijìtún (help·info)) (Lipotes vexillifer, Lipotes meanin "left behind", vexillifer "flag bearer") wis a freshwatter dowphin foond anly in the Yangtze River in Cheenae. Nicknamed "Goddess o the Yangtze" (simplified Cheenese: 长江女神; tradeetional Cheenese: 長江女神; pinyin: Cháng Jiāng nǚshén) in Cheenae, the dowphin is an aa cried Cheenese river dowphin, Yangtze River dowphin, whitefin dowphin an Yangtze dowphin. It is nae tae be confused wi the Cheenese white dowphin or the finless porpoise.
The baiji population declined drastically in decades as Cheenae industrialized an made hivy uise o the river for fishin, transportation, an hydroelectricity. Efforts wur made tae conserve the species, but a late 2006 expedeetion failed tae find ony baiji in the river. Organizers declared the baiji functionally extinct, which would mak it the first knt aquatic mammal species tae acome extinct syne the demise o the Japanese sea lion an the Caribbean monk seal in the 1950s. It would an aa be the first recordit extinction o a well-studied cetacean species (it is unclear if some previously extinct varieties wur species or subspecies) tae be directly attributable tae human influence.
In August 2007, a Cheenese man reportitly videotaped a lairge white ainimal swimmin in the Yangtze. Altho it wis tentatively confirmed that the ainimal on the video is probably a baiji, the presence o anly ane or a few animals, particularly o advanced age, is nae enough tae save a functionally extinct species frae true extinction. The last kent livin baiji wis Qi Qi (淇淇), who died in 2002.
References[edit | edit source]
- Mead, J. G.; Brownell, R. L., Jr. (2005). "Order Cetacea". In Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 723–743. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494.
- Smith, B.D., Zhou, K., Wang, D., Reeves, R.R., Barlow, J., Taylor, B.L. & Pitman, R. (2008). "Lipotes vexillifer". IUCN Red Leet o Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. Internaitional Union for Conservation o Naiture. Retrieved January 18, 2013.
- Miller, Gerrit S (1918). "A new river-dolphin from China". Smithsonian miscellaneous collections 68 (9): 1–12.
- "The Chinese river dolphin is functionally extinct". baiji.org. December 13, 2006. Archived from the original on January 4, 2007. Retrieved December 13, 2006.[deid airtin]
- "Rare Dolphin Seen in China, Experts Say". New York Times. August 30, 2007. Retrieved August 30, 2007.
- "White dolphine appears from the brink". AFP. August 29, 2007. Retrieved August 31, 2007.