Rare pink dolphins sighted in Hong Kong

Posted by Kyro Mitchell on 16 September 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has forced a majority of the world to stay indoors for the past few months. In Hong Kong, sightings of the rare Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins, also known as the ‘Chinese white dolphins’ or ‘Pink dolphins’, have been reported.

Rare pink dolphin enjoying the quite waters in Hong Kong. Image credit: screenshot from video.

Sightings of this endangered species of dolphin has risen by as much as 30% since March of this year, when ferry and boat traffic along the Pearl River Delta in Hong Kong was officially suspended, according to the Daily Mail.

During the lack of human activity when Hong Kong was placed under lockdown, researchers used drones to get an aerial view of the landscape and dropped a microphone into the surrounding waters to monitor the dolphins. Once they had analyzed the data, researchers discovered that the dolphins were quickly adapting to the more quiet environment, which could lead to an increase in population numbers.

‘What we have noticed since the ferries have stopped in this area is dolphins we hadn’t seen for four, five, six years are back in the Hong Kong habitat, so it seems very quickly that the dolphins have come back into this waterway,’ said marine scientist Lindsay Porter to the Independent.

The lack of human activity could be key to the pink dolphins survival. According to reports from the WWF, the population of pink dolphins in the Pearl River Delta is believed to be around 2,500. That figure could continue to shrink if activity along the river picks up, as the dolphins could be in danger of being hit by a boat or ferry as they move between the protected areas.

Take a look at researcher recall their experience with the pink dolphins below:

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