Monday, August 29, 2005

AMAZONIAN MANATEES - Amazon manatee expedition enters final phase

Of all the endangered animals from Last Chance To See, the Amazonian Manatee is one we get little information on. So its a nice surprise to get a little snippet here from Portal da Cidadania.
An expedition that has been studying the situation of the Amazon manatee (Expedição Peixe-Boi Amazônico) since 2000, began the final phase of its work on August 16 when it left Santarem (PA). It will arrive in Manaus today, concluding the study. The Amazon manatee (Trichechus inungis) is the world's only river species. The expedition has gathered data on its habitat and habits, and worked with riverside inhabitants on the importance of preserving the species. The Amazon manatee has been hunted ever since colonial times and is threatened with extinction.

The expedition, sponsored by the Aquatic Mammals Center at the Environmental Protection Institute (Ibama), distributed gifts and gave talks and classes to local inhabitants. During the lifetime of the expedition, some 600 riverside communities were visited and around 18,000 people interviewed. It travelled on the Amazon, Negro, Purus, Madeira, Tapajos and Arapiuns rivers.

Translator: Allen Bennett
© Agencia Brasil