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  • These people are on a pilgrimage.

    這些人正在進行一場朝聖之旅。

  • They're in one of the most remote parts of the United States, to see something spectacular that happens every year.

    他們位於美國最偏遠的角落,來欣賞每年都會發生的美景。

  • An icon of the American West.

    美國西部的經典美景。

  • This is a sage grouse.

    這是艾草松雞。

  • And this is its mating dance.

    而這是牠們的求偶舞。

  • The sage grouse once numbered in the millions across this entire region.

    艾草松雞曾在這一整塊區域盤據一方。

  • But today, they are on the verge of endangerment.

    但現今,他們正處於絕種邊緣。

  • And the area they live on has shrunk by half.

    牠們生存的棲息地已縮小了一半。

  • That's a problem.

    這是個問題。

  • And not just because it's fun to look at.

    且不僅僅是因為觀賞牠們很有趣。

  • It's because the sage grouse is actually really important.

    是因為艾草松雞其實非常重要。

  • And to understand why, you have to understand its dance.

    為了明白其中原因,你得先了解牠的舞步。

  • This is a female sage grouse.

    這是一隻母艾草松雞。

  • And this is a male sage grouse.

    而這是一隻公艾草松雞。

  • During mating season, it's big and flamboyant looking, all so that it can attract mates.

    交配季時,牠們會變得很豔麗且大隻,只為了吸引配偶。

  • It's sort of like a peacock in that way.

    有點像孔雀開屏的概念。

  • The spiky tail, the puffed out chest - they don't serve a clear function except to be attractive.

    刺狀的尾巴與膨脹的胸膛除了求偶外沒有其他作用。

  • These white feathers on its chest are rough and spiky.

    這些胸前的白色羽毛很粗糙且刺刺的。

  • And for the first step of its dance, the sage-grouse takes a deep breath, and it swishes its wings against those spiky feathers.

    艾草松雞求偶舞的第一步是,牠們會深呼吸,然後揮動翅膀摩擦胸前刺刺的羽毛。

  • It sounds like this this.

    聽起來就像這樣。

  • These yellow things are its vocal sac.

    這些黃色的東西是牠們的聲囊。

  • It's actually one esophagus with a strong muscle in the center.

    其實就是一條食道加上中心有強健肌肉。

  • When the sage grouse takes in a gulp of air, it contracts.

    當艾草松雞吸入一大口氣,聲囊就會收縮。

  • When it breathes out, the vocal sac pops.

    而當牠吐氣時,聲囊就會發出聲音。

  • That sounds like this.

    聽起來像這樣。

  • Female sage grouse can hear these sounds from up to two miles away.

    母艾草松雞在兩英里外就能聽到這些聲音。

  • And then it's a competition.

    接下來就是一場硬戰。

  • The strongest male dancers crowd out the weaker ones.

    最強壯的公舞者會排擠掉弱者。

  • The winner gets to mate with most of the females.

    贏家可以和大多數的母艾草松雞交配。

  • After they mate, the females go up to ten miles away to nest.

    交配後,母艾草松雞會離開至最遠十英里外去築巢。

  • But this arena, where the competition goes down, that place stays the same every year.

    但結束後,這個戰場會留下,每年都會在同一個地方再次競賽。

  • Sage grouse live across this whole vast area.

    艾草松雞在這整個寬闊的區域都有足跡。

  • But year after year, they each come back to do the courtship ritual in the same exact spot - one of these blue dots.

    年復一年,牠們都會回到同一個地點求偶,也就是畫面上藍色的點。

  • It's why sage-grouse watchers always know where to find them.

    這也是為何賞艾草松雞者都知道要去哪裡找到牠們。

  • That mating area is called a lek.

    這種交配的點稱作求偶場。

  • And it's a big part of why sage grouse matter so much.

    這也是艾草松雞如此重要的原因之一。

  • Coming back to the same place every year means that sage grouse are really easy to keep track of.

    每年都會回到同一個地方,這表示艾草松雞是種非常容易追蹤的動物。

  • Some leks have been monitored by researchers for more than 75 years.

    研究者已追蹤某些求偶場超過 75 年。

  • They're so easy to count that conservationists consider them an indicator species.

    牠們的數量很好掌握,所以環境保育學家稱牠們為指標種。

  • That means they use the number of sage grouse as a sort of proxy for how healthy the entire sagebrush ecosystem is.

    這表示保育學家會以艾草松雞作為代表,來看整個生態系統有多健康。

  • If sage grouse are doing well, there's a good chance that elk, and pygmy rabbits, and the 350 plant and animal species in the region are doing okay too.

    若艾草松雞情況不錯,有很大的機會駝鹿、侏儒兔與其他 350 種在這個區域的動植物,情況都還不錯。

  • That also means that if you want to protect wildlife in the American West, figuring out how to protect the sage grouse is a good strategy.

    這也代表,如果你想保護美國西部的野生動物,找出如何保護艾草松雞是個好策略。

  • In 2008, Wyoming implemented a new policy aimed at protecting the bird.

    2008 年時,懷厄明州實施一項新法律來保護此種鳥類。

  • It ended up also having major benefits for another animal - the mule deer.

    結果也使當地另一種動物大大受惠——騾鹿。

  • But because sage grouse are so easy to count, we also know that they are in trouble.

    也因為艾草松雞的數量很容易數清,這也讓我們得知了,牠們有危險了。

  • The lek is where the sage grouse mates, but it's just the epicenter of a much larger range where they live.

    求偶場是艾草松雞交配的地方,但那只是牠們棲息地的一個小中心點而已。

  • And in order for them to keep coming back to the lek to reproduce, sage grouse need the entire range to be undisturbed.

    為了可以不斷回到求偶場繁殖,艾草松雞需要整個棲息地都不受打擾。

  • That means if human activity alters this range, they tend to not return to the lek - they don't reproduce.

    這表示,若人類活動改變了該處,牠們就不會回到求偶地——這表示牠們就不會繼續繁殖。

  • Montana started keeping track of sage grouse leks in 2002.

    蒙大拿州從 2002 年開始追蹤艾草松雞求偶地的數量。

  • Since then, their population in the state has fallen by nearly half.

    從那時起,牠們的在這州的數量便少了幾乎一半。

  • There are a lot of reasons for this decline: invasive plant species, wildfires, but a big one is drilling and mining.

    有數個原因造成牠們數量的降低-入侵種植物、野火,但最大的原因還是鑽探石油與採礦。

  • Western states have increased production dramatically in recent years.

    西部的州近年來產量大幅上升。

  • A huge amount of new oil.

    大量的石油。

  • Oil, coal, and natural gas dominates the landscape and the economy.

    石油、煤礦與天然氣控制了地面與經濟。

  • Wyoming has the most sage grouse of any state.

    懷厄明州有最多的艾草松雞。

  • Here's a map of leks in Wyoming.

    這是懷厄明州求偶地的地圖。

  • And these are oil and gas fields.

    而這些是石油與天然氣採集地。

  • In 2015, governors from four states announced a plan with the federal government to protect the sage grouse.

    2015 年時,四州州長與聯邦政府聯合發表一項保護艾草松雞的計畫。

  • It banned mineral mining across ten million acres of sage grouse habitat.

    該計畫禁止在艾草松雞棲息地內,千萬英畝的採礦活動繼續進行。

  • And it restricted oil and gas leasing in 13,000 square miles of the most critical habitat areas.

    且限制石油與天然氣於重要棲息地 13,000 平方英畝中的開採執照。

  • It was hailed as the largest conservation effort in U.S. history.

    這被稱為美國歷史以來,最大的環保保育勝利。

  • But today, Donald Trump's administration isn't enforcing the restrictions on oil and gas leasing.

    但現在,川普政府並沒有執行開採石油與天然氣的限制。

  • And it canceled the ban on mining here.

    他們也取消了對採礦的禁令。

  • And the numbers reflect that: since he took office, oil and gas leasing on public land in the U.S. has skyrocketed.

    數字反映了一切,自從川普入主白宮,美國公有地石油與天然氣開採執照的發放數量便急速上升。

  • And on land the 2015 plan was supposed to protect, leasing has gone up tenfold.

    這 2015 年發表的計畫原意是要保護環境,但現在開採執照卻上升十倍。

  • Today, officials predict that sage grouse numbers will keep falling.

    現在,官方預測艾草松雞的數量會繼續下降。

  • The sage grouse is an indicator species.

    艾草松雞為指標種。

  • It means that the sage grouse can tell you a lot about the health of the entire sagebrush ecosystem across the American West.

    這表示觀察艾草松雞可以得知整個美國西部生態圈的健康狀況。

  • But they can also indicate something about American policy.

    但也可從牠們身上看出美國的政策。

  • About the power that fossil fuel and mining companies have over government.

    關於石油燃料公司的權力,是如何壓過政府的。

  • About what we choose to protect.

    關於我們選擇保護什麼。

  • And what we don't.

    與放棄什麼。

These people are on a pilgrimage.

這些人正在進行一場朝聖之旅。

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B2 中高級 中文 美國腔 Vox 石油 棲息地 天然氣 數量 開採

【環境教育】瀕危的艾草松雞 vs. 石化產業 人類該選擇環保還是經濟? (This goofy bird vs. the fossil fuel industry)

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    Mackenzie 發佈於 2020 年 02 月 01 日
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