Marine mammal Dugongs face extinction threat, reveals watchlist

The updated International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List, on Friday, revealed that marine mammal Dugongs are facing extinction in East Africa and New Caledonia.

New Delhi,UPDATED: Dec 10, 2022 07:58 IST

A female Dugong swims in her tank at the Sydney Aquarium. (Photo: Reuters)

By India Today Web Desk: Marine mammal Dugongs are facing extinction, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List that was released on Friday. The large herbivorous marine mammals, usually known as sea cow, are now threatened with extinction.

The IUCN watchlist revealed that the population of Dugongs in East Africa and New Caledonia has entered the Red List as “critically endangered” and “endangered” respectively.

The mammal is “vulnerable” globally. The primary threats to this species are poaching in New Caledonia and unintentional capture in fishing gear in East Africa. Also, they suffer boat injuries in both locations.

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Dugongs eat seagrass in shallow coastal waters. Several factors like production, fossil fuel exploration, pollution and unauthorized development are degrading their seagrass food source in East Africa, while seagrass is being damaged by agricultural run-off and pollution from nickel mining in New Caledonia.

According to the IUCN Director General, Bruno Oberle, “Today’s IUCN Red List update reveals a perfect storm of unsustainable human activity decimating marine life around the globe.”

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The updated list comes as delegates from across the world meet in Montreal for a UN biodiversity conference to finalize a new framework for “a peace pact with nature,” with key goals to preserve Earth’s forests, oceans and species.

(with inputs from AFP)

Edited By:

Manisha Pandey

Published On:

Dec 10, 2022

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