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Taiwan to block one lane of freeway for butterflies

 
theresident
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03/25/2007 01:26 AM
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Taiwan to block one lane of freeway for butterflies
TAIPEI (AFP) - Taiwanese authorities are to temporarily shut one lane of a busy road to protect millions of butterflies on their seasonal migration, officials said Saturday.

Under the measure, one lane of the freeway near Linei township in central Taiwan will be closed on the mornings of April 3-5 during the "peak hours" of the yearly migration by purple-spotted butterflies.

The measure may lead to traffic jams but it is worth doing, said Lee Thay-ming, head of the National Freeway Bureau.

"Human beings need to coexist with the other species even if they are tiny butterflies," Lee told AFP.

About one third of the island's purple-spotted butterflies risk their lives at the end of winter by flying north along the 300-kilometre (180 mile) route, which cuts across the elevated road, butterfly expert Jhan Jia-long said.

According to a study of Jhan's group, an estimated 11,500 butterflies flew over the freeway per minute in the three hours to the noon on April 3, 2005, and that at least one million butterflies flew past the area on that day.

"A number of butterflies perished when they were dragged into strong turbulence caused by cars racing along the freeway," Jhan said.

Professor Sweehu Cheng of I-Shou University, one of the volunteers dedicated to the protection of indigenous butterflies, estimated that many thousands of butterflies were killed on the freeway each spring.

Authorities also erected a protective net along the freeway, hoping that butterflies would be forced to fly higher and avoid crashing with cars.

The third trial measure being taken is to install ultraviolet lights under the elevated road which the experts said could lure the light-sensitive insects to fly safely underneath.

The measures were aimed to reduce the ecological impact from the construction of the freeway, Cheng said, adding that butterflies are also a key link of the island's food chain.

"The factor (protection of butterflies) was not taken into consideration when the freeway was built," he said. The freeway was inaugurated more than four years ago.

Cheng said he had not expected the proposed protective measures, presented by him and another professor of I-Shou University Lin Tieh-hsung and estimated to cost around one million Taiwan dollars (30,000 US) to be approved.

Each winter, millions of purple-spotted butterflies move south beginning in November, with around 600,000 wintering in "Purple Butterfly Valley" of Maolin, which along with the Monarch butterfly's winter home in Mexico is one of only two mass wintering sites known in the world, Jhan said.

[link to news.yahoo.com]
Anonymous Coward
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03/25/2007 01:30 AM
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Re: Taiwan to block one lane of freeway for butterflies
hmmm I hope the butterflies remember to stay in their lane
LS

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03/25/2007 01:31 AM
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Re: Taiwan to block one lane of freeway for butterflies
i DO NOT LIKE YOUR AVATAR.
theresident (OP)

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03/25/2007 01:32 AM
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Re: Taiwan to block one lane of freeway for butterflies
i DO NOT LIKE YOUR AVATAR.
 Quoting: LS


sorry...worse than yours I suppose?
LS

User ID: 74965
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03/25/2007 01:35 AM
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Re: Taiwan to block one lane of freeway for butterflies
i DO NOT LIKE YOUR AVATAR.


sorry...worse than yours I suppose?
 Quoting: theresident


lmao

PEACE
theresident (OP)

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03/25/2007 01:40 AM
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Re: Taiwan to block one lane of freeway for butterflies
only b/c i'm a peaceful guy

hf

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