for many years now i have followed the rapid demise of the yangtze river dolphin in china. i became very interested in river dolphins (that are exclusively freshwater) after seeing one in the ganges river in india. since then i have been lucky enough to have even swam amongst the pink ones that live in the amazon. unfortunately for the worlds river dolphins and other freshweater cetaceans, their habitats happen to be among the most polluted and economically important (for their respective countries) in the world. all are endangered and in need of serious conservation initiatives if we are to see them survive, however with china's baiji or yangtze river dolphin, the situation is so bad that it is probably bound to become extinct with maybe only <10 left in the entire yangtze river. if that. everyone agrees that the only chance of saving this species (and it is risky) is to remove all the remaining dolphins out of the yangtze and place them in a ox-bow lake that was created as a preserve for the dolphins. so far only one dolphin has ever been captured and released - it subsequently drowned in a net designed to keep it in the preserve (the net has since been replaced with walls). the situation angered some groups funding the project and they pulled out (much to my anger!) thus meaning that internal bickering amongst the NGO's that were working together have potentially put the nail in the coffin for this species!! i was resigned (as are most scientists) to the fact that the baiji was going to become extinct in the next couple of years. this would mean it would become the first cetacean to ever go extinct at the hands of humans. depressing. anyhow, the other day i decided to see if any news on the topic had come in and i discovered this new website - which put a (albeit a teeny one) glimmer of hope in my life..... http://www.baiji.org/ fingers crossed they get a move on.