New from NPR! 巨蟒肆虐美國?預知詳情先聽寫再說

這一篇NPR文章不是什麼新聞,因為報導是去年的,目前美國國會已經明令禁止這類型與其他外來蟒蛇進口美國,以免類似的問題再度發生。

到底是什麼問題,要讓美國國會大動作開聽證會,最後下令禁止這類型蟒蛇進入美國呢?這是典型的人類干預自然的例子,我們最後再度自食惡果。緬甸蟒蛇本來生長在東南亞或是南亞一帶,怎麼會跑到美國去呢?當然是因為有人想要飼養啊。有需求就有人進口。當初很多玩家興起一股爬蟲類飼養風,於是無辜緬甸蟒蛇被捕捉,然後高價進口到美國。後來這些飼主發現,肉食性的緬甸蟒蛇,終其一生會不斷地長大,最後長到一個難以招架的地步,結果只有棄養。不負責任的飼主將這些蟒蛇放生到佛羅里達一帶的沼澤區(因為當地的氣候與原生地比較接近,非常適合巨蟒生存。結果在沒有天敵的狀態下,任巨蟒繁殖,以至於今天的佛羅里達州某些沼澤區,充斥著這些蟒蛇,已經到了蛇滿為患的地步。

托福的生物學主題裡面,有很多講human interference對大自然所造成的危害,現在大蟒蛇在佛州某些地帶到處橫行,搞得人心惶惶。之前有爬蟲專家herpetologist跳出來說大家反應過度了,美國政府干預蟒蛇進口實在太無聊,但是有些人怕如果不管制,將未來蟒蛇肆虐,搞不好連人都會被吞進去。

這樣的擔憂是其實是有根據的,因為蟒蛇可以長到七至八公尺甚至更長,體重有的多達幾百公斤。不過大家也要記住一點,蟒蛇是無辜的,可惡的是人類。要不是當初有人捕捉這種動物販賣,今年也不會這樣,人類自作孽,現在又要回頭來殺蟒,這是錯誤示範。

下面這張圖片,是前陣子有人在佛州的沼澤區逮到了一隻懷孕的母蟒蛇,結果居然二話不說把蟒蛇給開膛破肚了。我希望這些研究人員不是活生生的殺死這隻母蟒蛇,不然實在是太可怕了。人類有啥權利可以這樣做事情?



這隻緬甸母蟒蛇的肚子被切開時,研究人員發現她的肚子裡面有87個蛋。所以這是一屍88條命。




我知道很多人很怕蛇,我也不例外。可是大家要有同理心。蛇跟蜘蛛這些動物都跟我們一樣,是活在這個世上討生活的。巨蟒在中國是一級國家保護動物,這類型蟒蛇壽命可達二十年,是游泳高手,母蟒蛇一胎可以產下差不多12至36枚卵。少數的大型母蟒蛇,可以生更多。

目前美國國會已經明令禁止緬甸蟒蛇與其他外來蟒蛇進口。希望人類不要繼續造惡,大家回頭是岸啊。




上圖是白化緬甸巨蟒 Albino Burmese Python。

下周課堂上我會抽時間上這一篇,順便解釋一些字詞。
大家先下載聲音檔,練習填空。第一次聽不完整的可以多聽幾遍。

下載聲音檔請點我



Will Florida Pythons Slither To Rest Of The U.S.?


You are listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.
Should the federal government be in the business of banning exotic snakes? Take Burmese pythons, for instance. The threat they pose to the Everglades is well documented. Pythons have been breeding in South Florida since the 1990s, and some studies have indicated they're spreading. Concerns that pythons could move into other states led to a nationwide prohibition on their importation and sale. But as NPR's Greg Allen reports from Miami, some researchers now argue that such a far-reaching ban was unnecessary.
GREG ALLEN, BYLINE: There are several ______________ snake species that have become a problem in the Everglades, but for wildlife managers, the biggest _____________ is the Burmese python.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (Groan) P-52 folks, and she's __________ and _____________.
ALLEN: Earlier this year, researchers with the U.S. Geological Survey captured the largest Burmese python yet in Everglades National Park. In a videotape, three USGS staffers wrestle the snake out of a plastic crate to measure it.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Wow. You're having to use all your muscle, aren't you?
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Yep.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: To hold her head.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Yeah. And she's still stronger than me.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Do you know where her...
ALLEN: This snake was __________ feet, seven inches long and a female carrying ______ eggs. Wildlife managers are working to get a handle on the problem of exotic snakes in South Florida, but the snakes have already made a ____________. One study suggests in Everglades National Park pythons have reduced the population of raccoon, possums, deer and other mammal species by ____________ percent. To help combat the problem, the federal government earlier this year banned _______________ and sale of Burmese pythons. A study several years ago by USGS found pythons could potentially spread up the _________________ and west to California. But Elliott Jacobson, an emeritus professor of zoological medicine at the University of Florida, says a new study questions how far beyond South Florida pythons could spread.
ELLIOTT JACOBSON: These maps give a very false sense of distribution.
ALLEN: In a study published in the journal Integrative Zoology, Jacobson and other researchers looked closely at the low and high temperatures found along the East Coast in the python's projected ____________ range. Freezing temperatures are deadly for pythons.
JACOBSON: The bottom-line conclusion was the number of ______________ in the winter is going to limit the ability of this animal to spread beyond extreme South Florida.
ALLEN: Jacobson says this new information shows the federal government overreacted when it imposed a _____________ on a species that's a problem just in Florida. Brady Barr agrees. He's resident herpetologist with the National Geographic Society. He says the new study shows something he and other researchers have maintained for some time that Burmese pythons can't ___________ far beyond Florida's three southern-most counties. Barr says that's because, unlike _____________, pythons can't tolerate __________ and they lack the ____________ to hibernate.
BRADY BARR: They don't have the innate ability to find hibernacula, to find places to hide or to be warm. They just - they don't know how to do that.
ALLEN: That question - whether snakes from _____________ climates like pythons may take measures to ___________ to the cold - is one that divides herpetologists. Gordon Rodda, now retired from USGS, helped write the report showing pythons could potentially spread throughout the southeast U.S. He says there's _____________ in this new report to change his ____________.
GORDON RODDA: We know that Burmese pythons in the more high-altitude portions of their range do, in fact, hibernate. The question then is, how do they acquire that behavior to do so?
ALLEN: Later this week, this is a question that may come up in Congress. A House committee is holding a _________________ on whether to extend the ban on Burmese pythons to other exotic snake species. Greg Allen, NPR News, Miami.

留言

  1. hi i like this blog , i study enhlish here , can u post the answer of the question

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  2. hi花豹

    I gave the answer sheet to my students already. I soon deleted the post after the previous session had come to an end. If you're interested in reading this artilce, plesse check out http://www.npr.org/templates/transcript/transcript.php?storyId=165941428
    and good luck.
    Also I will upload the answer sheet next week, so if you want the "walk through" version, wait a few days. I realized that there might be more people out there who would like to have access to my version on this topic so i'll upload the article again.

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