日期:2016-11-26 16:47





The sound of penguins in the Antarctic. Penguins are already under threat from global warming, but scientists are now warning about new dangers from diseases spread by migratory birds. A new strain of bird flu has been found in some penguin species. I’ve been talking to our science reporter.
Of course bird flu has been around for a very very long time. Different strains circulate in wild birds and domestic poultry until relatively recently the Antarctic seemed to be very fragile. Of course you don’t know the virus down there. A couple of years ago, they found traces of flu in penguins. It doesn’t seem to be causing any illness. I mean they did look at it under the microscope and look at the actual genetics of it, the strain of it. It was a very ancient strain. And then the latest result suggests that there’s another strain of bird flu that’s been found. This is a more modern one. And it seems to be coming maybe from birds in North America or South America. So they are somehow picking it up from migratory birds that can spread virus at long distances around the world and then take it down into the Antarctic which is a very precious environment for animals.
But if the bird flu doesn’t seem to be harming the penguins, why does it matter?
Well, this one, it seems to be OK as far as they know, but if another strain got in, a more deadly strain then it could be very serious for penguins. So really they need to know more, why it’s there, how it gets in, do some monitoring and also it’s another reminder of the protection needed for penguins, things like their habitat, their breeding grounds, their fishing grounds, to keep an eye on these viruses and check that there isn’t something more serious that could do harm.



Containing bird flu is almost impossible in any environment. In an environment like the Antarctic, is there any point even trying?
Well, obviously conservationists say you must try in terms of sea birds. Penguins are the second most endangered sea bird. 45 species of bird in the Antarctic including about 6 or 7 different types of penguins--so we’ve got a huge richness there of penguins of bird life. So conservationists are saying we do need to monitor this and keep an eye on it.
It’s an archeological find that’s been described as phenomenal, two skeletons, thought to be of Chinese people from between the 2nd and 4th centuries A.D. discovered in a graveyard here in London. The bones were found in a Roman burial place.


1. Migratory bird 候鸟
例:I wonder if the taxi uncle spotted the migratory bird.
2. Bird flu 禽流感
例:The government has managed to control SARS and bird flu.
3. Pick up 染上 (疾病)
例:They've picked up a really nasty infection from something they've eaten.
4. Breeding ground 滋生地,繁殖地
例:Warm milk is the ideal breeding ground for bacteria.
5. Fishing ground 渔场
例:It is completely justified for Chinese fishermen to fish in an area that has been a traditional fishing ground for generations.


  • antarcticadj. 南极的 n. (the A-)南极洲,南极圈
  • circulatevi. 流通,循环,传播 vt. 使流通
  • migratoryadj. 迁移的,流浪的
  • geneticsn. 遗传学
  • strainn. 紧张,拉紧,血统 v. 劳累,拉紧,过份使用
  • virusn. 病毒,病原体
  • spreadv. 伸展,展开,传播,散布,铺开,涂撒 n. 伸展,传
  • globaladj. 全球性的,全世界的,球状的,全局的
  • checkn. 检查,支票,账单,制止,阻止物,检验标准,方格图案
  • traditionaladj. 传统的