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Green Corner

Chinese White Dolphin

Chinese White DolphinChinese White Dolphin

The Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin (Sousa chinensis), or commonly known as Chinese White Dolphin (CWD), is found throughout the western Pacific and Indian oceans, from southern China and northern Australia in the east to South Africa in the west. There are about 1,300 to 1,500 dolphins found in the eastern part of the Pearl River Estuary and Hong Kong waters. The highest dolphin density in Hong Kong is found in the west Lantau waters.

The CWD is protected in Hong Kong by the Wild Animals Protection Ordinance (Cap. 170). The import, export, and possession of this species are also regulated by the Animals and Plants (Protection of Endangered Species) Ordinance (Cap. 187). To learn more about the CWD, please visit the relevant webpage of Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department.

Major mitigation measures to protect the Chinese White Dolphin

The locations and alignments of the HZMB Hong Kong Projects are carefully chosen to avoid the CWD major active areas. During the construction, a series of mitigation measures are implemented to minimise potential impacts to the Chinese White Dolphin and the major ones include:

  1. Non-dredged Reclamation Method: to adopt non-dredging methods for reclamation and seawall construction to reduce the amount of dredging and marine disturbance.

  2. No underwater percussive piling.
  3. No formation of underwater sockets into rock (bored-piling) during peak dolphin calving season in May and June.
  4. Acoustic decoupling measures: noisy equipment mounted on construction vessels is acoustically-decoupled to minimize underwater noise.

  5. Marine vessels follow pre-defined regular routes: construction vessel will follow regular travel routes and avoid CWD active areas.

  6. Marine vessel speed control: <10 knots in work site, marine park and proposed marine park.

  7. Skipper Training: captains of construction vessels working in the areas have undergone training on local dolphins and porpoises.

  8. Dolphin Exclusion Zone (DEZ): a dolphin exclusion zone of 250 meters radius is implemented during the silt curtain installation and the bored pile casing installation works. Works suspended if dolphin is found within the DEZ.

  9. Dolphin Watching Plan (DWP): a silt curtain enclosed areas are regularly checked and works will be suspended if dolphin is found within the enclosed area.

  10. Regular monitoring of CWD population in the north-western waters of Hong Kong.

  11. Adopt best construction practices, such as employing silt curtain and Y-shaped funnel, etc. to minimise sediment dispersal during works, and avoid impact on water quality.