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10月3日号 ブラジル湿地帯で大規模火災 多数の動植物が危機に

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scorch
焼く(後出 burn は焼ける)
(tropical) wetlands
(熱帯性)湿地帯
a vast swath of ~
~の広大な範囲
fire
火災(後出 flame は炎)
sweep across ~
~に広がる
dense
(ここでは)濃い、厚い
smoke
煙(後出は燻煙(くんえん)する)
satellite
衛星
federal
連邦の
drought
干ばつ
parched
干上がった
Brazilian ... Research
ブラジル国立宇宙研究所のこと
monitor
監視する
troops
軍隊
scramble to ~
大急ぎで~する
overtake
襲いかかる
exacerbate
悪化させる
~ degrees Celsius
セ氏~度
logging
伐採(後出 mining は採鉱)
hive
(ミツバチの)巣
extract
(ここでは)採取する
species
(動植物の)種
mamma
l哺乳動物
abound with ~
~が多い
World ... Fund
世界自然保護基金
wildcat
野生のネコ科動物
conservation
保護
 

Scorched Wetlands   

A vast swath of wetlands is burning in Brazil, the fires sweeping across several national parks and hiding the sun behind dense smoke.

Satellite images analyzed by the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro indicate this season's fires in the drought-parched Pantanal have covered 3.1 million hectares — an area the size of Belgium, and about a fifth of the entire wetlands.

It's the worst fire season since at least 1998, with more than 16,000 fires recorded so far by the Brazilian government's Institute of Space Research, which also monitors satellite images.

Firefighters, troops and volunteers have been scrambling to find and rescue jaguars and other animals before they are overtaken by the flames, which have been exacerbated by the worst drought in 47 years, strong winds and temperatures exceeding 40 degrees Celsius.

While illegal logging, mining and farming operations have been blamed for most of the fires in the Amazon region to the north, a spokesperson for Mato Grosso state's firefighters said one of the causes of this year's Pantanal fires is the practice of burning roots to smoke wild bees from their hives to extract honey.

The Pantanal, the world's largest tropical wetlands, holds thousands of plant and animal species, including 159 mammals, and it abounds with jaguars, according to the World Wildlife Fund.

About 200 jaguars in the area have already been injured, killed or forced from their territories by the fires, according to Panthera, an international wildcat conservation organization. (AP)

[本文 - 243 words]

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