Chinese White Dolphin

The Chinese White Dolphin, which is also known as the "pink dolphin" in Hong Kong, are part of the Sousa Chinensis species, along with the Indo-Pacific Hump-backed Dolphins. Information about these particular dolphins is very slim. Steps are being made in Hong Kong to help in the understanding and preservation of this dolphin species to help us understand more about these mammals.

The colouring of the Chinese White Dolphin has been noted to be variable. They have been recorded as being black in colour when born, quickly changing to white or grey on the upper part of their bodies with the bottom or belly of all color variants being a light pink when fully mature. The pictoral fins of these dolphins are small and rounded with flukes or tails being rounded and triangular. The Chinese White Dolphins athat inhabit the Indian Ocean have a hump on their back, just below the triangular dorsal fin. This species of dolphin that inhabit the Pacific Ocean don't have this hump. The beaks of the Chinese White Dolphin is slender and long.

Chinese White Dolphin calves are born with a size of 70cm or so. Calves appear to be born throughout the year with a peak being recognized during the warmer, summer months. When the Chinese White Dolphins reach an adult size around three meters.

The Chinese White Dolphins are typically found near coastlines and the mouths of major rivers. Pearl River, which is located near Hong Kong, provides estuarine water for these mammals, this appears to be the most comfortable for the Chinese White Dolphins. The population of these animals can only be estimated due to Chinese Authorities not allowing their waters to be surveyed. The estimates range from 100 to 150, excluding the dolphins of the Pearl River which can't be surveyed. Hong Kong has given their own estimate of the Chinese White Dolphin population of the Pearl River, which is around 180 dolphins. However this can't be confirmed by anyone other than the Hong Kong government.

Factors which endanger the Chinese White Dolphins are numerous. One of the more serious problems are the expansions taking place in and around the waters which they inhabit. One example is the Chek Lap Kok new airport in Lantau Island, which caused all Chinese White Dolphin calves born in 1996 to die. The construction done in and around the waters turns it murky and also causes extra reclamation silt, which turns the waters completely brown. The dolphins are not able to swim safely let alone find food to survive when the waters are like this. Explosions used for the construction and the exceptionally increased boat traffic also causes the deaths of the Chinese White Dolphins. Over fishing also causes an extensive decrease in the fish that the dolphins need to eat.

In hopes to improve the Chinese White Dolphins population Hong Kong developed a Dolphin Sanctuary at the temporary Aviation Fuel Receiving Facility. High speed ferries are banned in and around these waters enabling the dolphins to have peace. Trawling is also banned hear allowing the food for these dolphins from becoming depleted. However fishing is still allowed here but, fisherman are only allowed to fish with a permit in and around the sanctuary.