African Penguins Pulled into an Ecological Trap
By Jason G. Goldman on March 1, 2017


Over millions of years, penguins have evolved a keen(敏銳的) sense of where to find food. Once they’re old enough, they set off from the shores on which they hatched for the first time and swim long distances in search of tasty fish like anchovies(鯷、小鹹魚) and sardines(沙丁魚). But they don’t search directly for the fish themselves.
幾百萬年來,企鵝進化尋找食物的敏銳感(keen sense of sth),當牠們長夠大了,牠們從第一次孵化出生(they hatched )的岸上(shores)出發(set off),游很遠的距離(swim long distances )尋找(in search of)美味的魚,像是鯷魚(anchovies)和沙丁魚,但是企鵝不是直接找魚。

For example, when young endangered African penguins head out to sea, they look for areas with low surface temperatures and high chlorophyll (葉綠素[‘klɔrəfɪl]). Because those conditions signal(表示) the presence of phytoplankton(浮游植物). And lots of phytoplankton means lots of zooplankton(浮游動物), which in turn(同樣道理、依此類推 = because of that) means lots of their favorite fish. Well, that’s what it used to mean. 
比方說,當年輕瀕臨絕種的非洲企鵝朝向大海出發(head out to sea)時,牠們會尋找表面溫度低、高葉綠素(high chlorophyll)的地區,因為這種情況表示說(signal)有浮游植物(phytoplankton)的存在,很多浮游植物意味著很多的浮游動物(zooplankton),依此類推(in turn),意味著有很多牠們最愛的魚,嗯,以前的確是這個意思。

Climate change plus overfishing have made the penguin feeding grounds a mirage(海市蜃樓). The habitat is indeed plankton-rich—but now it’s fish-poor. Researchers call this kind of scenario an “ecological trap.” 
“It‘s a situation where you have a signal that previously pointed an animal towards good quality habitat. That habitat’s been changed, usually by rapidly induced(誘發性的、催生的) human pressures, usually anthropogenic(人為的) change—and the signal stays, but the underlying quality in the environment deteriorates(惡化)."
這種情況是,動物仍然收到先前的信號,告訴他們前往高品質的棲息地,然而棲息地已經改變,通常是快速催生的(induced)人為壓力造成,通常是人為的(anthropogenic)改變,信號依舊在,但環境中暗含的品質(underlying quality )惡化了(deteriorates)。

University of Exeter zoologist Richard Sherley. He and his team used satellite imaging(衛星成像) to track the dispersal(散布) of 54 recently fledged (長羽毛) African penguins from eight sites along southern Africa. Historically, the birds benefitted from tons of fish off the coasts of Angola, Namibia(納米比亞) and western South Africa, but now they're going hungry.
英國艾希特大學動物學家Richard Sherley,他和他的團隊用衛星成像(satellite imaging)沿著非洲南部,追蹤54隻剛成熟的(fledged 羽毛長齊的)非洲企鵝的分布情況(dispersal),根據過去歷史經驗,這些鳥類曾受惠於(benefit from sth)安哥拉、納米瑞亞和南非西部海岸外(off the coasts of sth)的魚,但是現在牠們開始挨餓了。
* 記者的文稿是off he coasts, 但是他讀的是along the coasts,意思不太一樣

"I was really hoping we'd see them going east, and finding areas where the fish had shifted to…so I was quite surprised to be wrong, and unfortunately quite sad to be wrong in this case. Because it ends up being quite a sad story for the penguins. " The researchers calculate that by falling into this ecological trap, African penguin populations on South Africa's Western Cape(南非西開普省) have declined by around 80 percent. The findings are in the journal Current Biology. 
我真的希望見到牠們往東邊過去,找到魚遷移過去的地方,所以我很驚訝我錯了,就這件事來說,這錯誤是非常的不幸,因為最終將會是這群企鵝的悲劇,研究人員估計,落入這個生態陷阱,南非西開普省的非洲企鵝數量減少大約百分之八十,這份研究調查(finding)刊登在Current Biology期刊。

Some research groups are exploring the idea of translocating chicks to a place where they can‘t get trapped, like the Eastern Cape. But Sherley thinks that a longer-term solution means implementing regulations to create more sustainable(可長可久的) fisheries(捕魚場;養魚場), something that he says has public support. And as for the penguins? “There’s not necessarily yet in an extinction vortex. So it‘s not hopeless yet. ” But time flies(時光飛逝). Unlike penguins.
某些研究團體研討這個辦法(exploring the idea ),把這群小雞(chicks)遷往不會中陷阱(get trapped)的地方,比方東開普省,但是Sherley認為長久的辦法是立法(implementing regulations )來建立一個可維持長久的(sustainable)捕魚區(fisheries),這樣才能獲得群眾的支持,可是這些企鵝該怎麼辦呢?「現在還不至於落到絕種的漩渦(vortex),所以還不算毫無希望」,可是,時光飛逝(time flies),企鵝不會飛。


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