Killing rats could save coral reefs 消滅老鼠可以保護珊瑚礁

Coral reefs are under threat> Find out how killing rats could save them.
Rat problem solution.

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飽受非議的老鼠不是一種能讓人們聯想起珊瑚礁的生物。但在熱帶島嶼上研究珊瑚礁的科學家們稱,這類動物直接威脅到珊瑚礁周圍生態系統的生存。

文字稿

On the tropical Chagos Islands in the Indian Ocean, this is the sound of rat-free territoryteeming with birdlife. The remote archipelago of 60 islands is now a natural laboratory.

在印度洋上的熱帶島嶼查戈斯群島上,鳥叫聲遍布這個無鼠地帶。這個擁有60個島嶼的偏遠群島現在是一個天然的實驗室。

While some islands are rat-free, others that were visited historically by ships are now home to the invasive rodents. And rats, scientists found, dramatically reduce the health of a coral reef surrounding an infested island.

雖然有些島嶼上沒有老鼠,但歷史上有船只造訪過的島嶼現在都已成為這類入侵嚙齒動物的家園。科學家們發現,在有大批老鼠出沒的島嶼周圍,其珊瑚礁的健康狀況急劇下降。

By killing seabirds, the rats deprive a reef of nutrient-rich seabird droppings that naturally fertilise it. The researchers working on the archipelago found that rat-free islands’ reefs were much healthier, with more and significantly larger fish.

透過捕殺海鳥,老鼠剝奪了珊瑚礁依靠營養豐富的海鳥糞便作為肥料使其生長的自由。在這個群島上工作的研究人員發現,沒有老鼠的島嶼周圍的珊瑚礁要健康得多,魚的數量也多,而且體積也明顯更大。

With coral reefs under threat from climate change, the scientists are now advocating rat eradication on islands around the world to protect some of the most diverse ecosystems in the ocean.

由於珊瑚礁受到氣候變化的威脅,所以科學家們現提倡在世界各地的島嶼上消滅老鼠,以保護海洋中最多樣化的生態系統。

1. 詞彙表

territory 區域,活動範圍
teeming 充滿…的
archipelago 群島
invasive 入侵的
rodents 嚙齒動物
infested (老鼠)大批出沒的
deprive 剝奪
fertilise 施肥
advocating 提倡,擁護
eradication 消滅,根除
diverse 多種多樣的

2. 閱讀理解:請在讀完上文後,回答下列問題 。 

1. Why have some islands become infested with rats and others not?

2. True or false? It’s the droppings from rats that damage the coral reefs.

3. What have researchers found that leads to larger fish in the sea around some islands?

4. Why do researchers think coral reefs should be protected?

3. 答案

1. Why have some islands become infested with rats and others not?
In the past, ships that visited certain islands, brought rats with them which stayed on the island and started to breed.

2. True or false? It’s the droppings from rats that damage the coral reefs.
False. The problem has nothing to do with rats’ droppings. The coral reefs need nutrient-rich seabird droppings that naturally fertilise it but this is reduced if the rats kill the seabirds.

3. What have researchers found that leads to larger fish in the sea around some islands?
The researchers working on the archipelago found that rat-free islands reefs were much healthier, with more and significantly larger fish.

4. Why do researchers think coral reefs should be protected?
They think that coral reefs are under threat from climate change and need protecting.

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