Amazon Pink River Dolphin


Did you know there is such a thing as a pink dolphin? The Amazon river dolphin (or botos) is born grey and becomes pinker with age. Why are they pink? Because its skin becomes more translucent allowing the blood to show through. Really, what you are seeing is their blood pumping through their blood vessels. They have a long powerful beak, small eyes and are somewhat slow swimmers. They can reach up to ten feet long and two hundred pounds. Despite this weight and length, they can move quickly in their habitat.

Where do they live? Pink River Dolphins inhabit the waters of the Amazon river in South America, and during flooding will move onto the flooded forests leaving them at risk of stranding. They are however extremely flexible so they can weave through the trees as they search for their prey. They are a completely freshwater species and there are only 5 species of freshwater dolphins.

What do they eat? They feed on crabs, catfish, and small fresh water fish. An added hunting benefit is their excellent eyesight which they use to locate prey in clear water. In murky water they emit a series of clicking noises which they then use as sonar.

Are they endangered? Yes,they have become one of the most endangered species due to human interference. The Amazon River Dolphin is currently threatened by habitat destruction, hydroelectric dam projects, mercury poisoning from gold prospecting, accidental entangling in fishing nets, pollution, and boat traffic. People and dolphins need to share the river, but that is easier said than done.

I think the pink river dolphin is an amazing animal, it is very unique with its translucent skin and the fact that it lives in freshwater is something that very few dolphins can claim. When you see the depth of some of the water they swim in and the way they move through the trees in the water you will be amazed at the wonderful pink river dolphin too.

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