Must be thrill to discover a new, never before seen species of any kind, but to stumble upon a new one that belongs to the most endangered dolphins in the world - river dolphins - sure is a whole new level of special.
Photo: Nicole Dutra
A highly suspected new river dolphin species has showed up in Brazil, in the Araguaia River Basin of the vast Amazon forest. It is a first such find in over a century. Scientist suggest the new fellow to be called the Araguaian Boto or Inia araguaiaensis in Latin. They have been isolated from other river dolphins by a series of rapids and a small canal.
DNA testing also suggests that DNA of Araguaian river dolphin is different enough from the other botos (another name for river dolphin) and to be classified as a new species. Scientists think that Araguaian boto possibly separated from other dolphin species more than 2 million years ago.
The scientists have observed the river dolphins for over 12 weeks and they could count only 120 of Araguaians, where only 600 is believed to be the number of animals that could live in the entire river basin.