New Amazon Species: Bolivian River Dolphin (Inia boliviensis) [NationalGeographic 2010-10-27]
River Species Surface
Photograph courtesy Fernando Trujillo, WWF
The Bolivian river dolphin was designated its own species in 2006 and adopted by the Bolivian government as a symbol of its conservation efforts in the Beni region.
River creatures such as the dolphin highlight the Amazon's often overlooked aquatic importance, noted Meg Symington, an Amazon expert for WWF.
"When you say 'Amazon,' most people think of forest. But in addition to being the largest rain forest on Earth, it is also the largest river system on Earth," she said. "The amount of fresh water flowing through the Amazon is almost 20 percent of the world's total."