This conservationist has a mission: Save the Amazon’s dolphins

Article written by Cynthia Gorney
Originally published by National Geographic (Feb 5, 2024)

Freshwater dolphins face an uncertain future as their waterways heat up. But a Colombian biologist has made it his life's work to advocate for the Amazon's “pink ambassadors.”

The alarms last September from Brazil’s Lago de Tefé first reached Fernando Trujillo by phone—his colleagues, fellow scientists, calling him in a panic. The brutal 2023 summer had been heating the Amazonia lake to temperatures far beyond anything previously recorded, and as they had feared, something was now happening to the pink river dolphins. “Three dead dolphins,” Trujillo remembers. “Then five dead dolphins. Then 70 dead, in one day.”

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