Skip to content
Endangered species


Endangered species


Although the Bolivian freshwater dolphin (Inia boliviensis) It is not yet officially recognized as a species (it is still considered a subspecies of I. geoffrensis, despite genetic evidence suggesting it is a species), the Bolivian State has already «nationalized» it and since 2010, when it enacted the «Bufeo Law» and published an «action plan» for its conservation, interest in this species has been growing significantly. FAUNAGUA has played a leading role in these efforts. It assessed the status of its populations , conducted studies on its movements using satellite transmitters , and identified the threats facing the species.

Scientists use satellite tags to monitor Amazon River's living legend, pink dolphins

The American network ABC and Beautiful Destinations made videos of the placement of satellite transmitters on the fins of five dolphins to be able to trace their movements.

In November 2018, FAUNAGUA carried out its tenth expedition to estimate the abundance of Inia boliviensis in the Ichilo River, headwaters of the Mamore River! This was the fourth expedition carried out on this river, the first having been carried out in 2007, 2010 and 2014. The objective of this last expedition in 2018 was to evaluate the impact of the tilefish fishery on dolphin populations

Do you want to participate in and/or co-finance an expedition?

Is fishing for scavenger species (blanquillo) in the Bolivian Amazon a risk for the Bolivian buffalo (Inia boliviensis) ?

FAUNAGUA concluded a study of the fish production chain and the perception of riverside residents about the Bolivian bufeo , which provides interesting inputs and recommendations for the design of a sustainable management strategy for aquatic fauna.

What is it about?

In recent years, a new fishery has emerged in the Bolivian Amazon: fishing for the scavenger species Calophysus macropterus , known as «blanquillo» . It is a carnivorous species that feeds mainly on dead fish. This fishery emerged as a response to a growing demand in the markets for cheap and smaller fish.

In this fishery, the guts and meat of beef, chicken, but also wild species, such as the lizard (Caiman yacaré) , the capybara (Hydrochaeris hydrochaeris) and… the Bolivian bufeo (Inia boliviensis) , are used as bait. The latter is a species protected by law of the Plurinational State of Bolivia. This fishery has not yet taken on the dimensions it has in Colombia and Brazil, where it poses a threat to the freshwater dolphin (Inia geoffrensis), but the activity is growing. We still have time to carry out prevention, environmental education and monitoring campaigns .

Inia geoffrensis (including the Bolivian subspecies) has recently been categorized as an endangered species (critical status)!!! (see the following link for more information ). It is urgent to think about a strategy to mitigate the impacts of human actions on this attractive species.

With this program, FAUNAGUA contributes to the Aichi goal.

Aichi goal nr. 12

Aichi goal nr. 12

By 2020, the extinction of identified threatened species will have been prevented and their conservation status will have been improved and sustained, especially that of the species in greatest decline.