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【科技报道】美国科学家发现贻贝河大死 US Scientists Discover Large Die-off of River Mussels

来源:慢速英语   时间:2020-01-10 17:00:10

Scientists are investigating a massive die-off of mussels in a major river in the southeastern United States. They hope to learn the cause.

科学家正在调查美国东南部一条主要河流中的大量贻贝死亡。他们希望了解原因。


In 2016, fish and wildlife officials discovered a big drop in the mussel population in the Clinch River. The river flows about 480 kilometers through the states of Virginia and Tennessee. It is home to many different kinds of fish and 46 species of mussels.

2016年,鱼类和野生动植物官员在克林奇河发现贻贝种群大量减少。这条河流经弗吉尼亚州和田纳西州约480公里。它是许多不同种类的鱼类和46种贻贝的所在地。


While freshwater mussels are small, they perform some important activities to keep rivers healthy. Mussels can clean up up to 38 liters of river water each day, removing algae, metals and other materials. The process can create a better river environment for fish, amphibians, plants and insects.

淡水贻贝虽小,但它们进行一些重要活动以保持河流健康。贻贝每天可以清除多达38升的河水,去除藻类,金属和其他物质。这个过程可以为鱼类,两栖动物,植物和昆虫创造更好的河流环境。


For this reason, scientists are working to find the cause of the large drop in mussel populations.

因此,科学家正在寻找贻贝种群大量减少的原因。


Jordan Richard is a biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. He told The Associated Press that officials have estimated that hundreds of thousands, possibly even millions, of mussels have died in the Clinch River.

Jordan Richard是美国鱼类和野生动物服务局的生物学家。他对美联社说,官方估计克林奇河有数十万甚至可能数百万的贻贝死亡。

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The mass die-off in the river of one kind of mussel, called the pheasantshell, has been especially worrisome. Officials say the population of pheasantshells dropped from 94,000 in 2016 to less than 14,000 in 2019. They measured the decrease along a 200-meter stretch of the Clinch River.

贻贝在河中的大量死亡特别令人担忧。官员们说,山鸡的数量从2016年的94,000例下降到2019年的14,000例以下。他们测量了克林奇河200米段的下降幅度。


Similar die-offs have been reported on at least five U.S. rivers and another in Spain. Richard has studied reports of similar die-offs over the years in rivers around the world. But so far he has not come up with many answers about why they happened.

据报道,至少有五条美国河流和西班牙的另一条河流也有类似的死亡事件。理查德(Richard)多年来研究了世界各地河流中类似死亡的报道。但是到目前为止,他还没有提出很多关于为什么会发生的答案。


Speaking about the Clinch, Richard said the river could even be compared to the Amazon because it contains so many different kinds of life. He spoke to the AP while examining the river's mussel population in a rural community in Tennessee.

理查德在谈到克林奇(Clinch)时说,这条河甚至可以与亚马逊河相提并论,因为它包含了许多不同种类的生活。他在考察田纳西州一个农村社区的淡水贻贝种群时向美联社发表讲话。


Mussel populations around the world have dropped sharply over the past 100 years. Scientists blame this on pollution, habitat loss and climate change. But they suspect the most recent decreases have another cause.

在过去的100年中,全世界的贻贝数量急剧下降。科学家将此归咎于污染,生境丧失和气候变化。但是他们怀疑最近的下降还有另一个原因。


Richard and his team believe an infectious disease could be responsible. The team is comparing healthy pheasantshell mussels to dying ones in an attempt to narrow down a list of possible diseases.

理查德和他的团队认为,传染病可能是造成这种情况的原因。研究小组正在将健康的山phe贻贝与垂死的贻贝进行比较,以缩小可能的疾病范围。


"All living things are chock-full of microorganisms, and we don't have any sort of map for what is healthy inside a mussel," Richard said.

理查德说:“所有生物都充满了微生物,我们对贻贝内部的健康状况没有任何了解。”


University of Wisconsin disease specialist Tony Goldberg is helping with the investigation. He specializes in wildlife illnesses of unknown cause. Goldberg told the AP that often disease is the final thing to kill a species that has already been harmed by other environmental conditions.

威斯康星大学疾病专家托尼·戈德堡正在协助调查。他专门研究原因不明的野生动物疾病。戈德堡告诉美联社,经常的疾病是杀死已经受到其他环境条件伤害的物种的最后一件事。


However, he says he is hopeful that the freshwater mussel team will be able to discover the cause of the massive die-offs and find a way to prevent them. The team includes scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey and a nonprofit conservation group.

但是,他说,他希望淡水贻贝小组能够发现大规模死亡的原因,并找到防止这种死亡的方法。该小组的成员包括美国地质调查局和一个非营利性保护组织的科学家。


"I see it as a race against time, not an impossible task," Goldberg said, adding "...if we lose these mussels, the rivers we all love are never going to be the same."

戈德堡说:“我认为这是与时间赛跑,不是不可能的任务,”他补充说:“如果我们失去了这些贻贝,我们所有人喜爱的河流将永远不会一样。”


重点词汇:

Words in This Story:

species – n. a group of animals or plants that are similar and can produce young animals or plants

algae – n. a plant with no stem or leaves that grows in or near water

amphibian – n. a type of animal that can live both on land and in water

habitat – n. the natural living environment for living things

chock-full – n. very full


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