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Cambodian sanctuaries home to critically endangered species

Pech Sotheary / Khmer Times Share:
Environment Ministry officials and conservationists inspect the Keo Seima Wildlife Sanctuary. Ministry of Environment
The Ministry of Environment revealed Tuesday about 60 species of critically endangered species inhabit Mondulkiri province’s Keo Seima Wildlife Sanctuary. Meanwhile, nests of the Oriental pratincole bird, which migrated over 8,000 kilometres from Australia to the Kingdom, were found in Takeo province’s Boeung Prek Lapouv Protected Landscape.

Environment Minister Say Samal on Tuesday said upon inspection on the conservation work in Keo Seima Wildlife Sanctuary, authorities reported the sanctuary is home to 60 species of rare and critically endangered animals and 25 species of carnivorous animals. The place was also recognised for its conservation of Asian elephants.

“We would like to acknowledge the efforts of rangers and officials of the Wildlife Conservation Society who have strived to patrol and protect the natural resources, as well as prevent and suppress crimes including deforestation, illegal forest land clearing, encroachment and wildlife poaching,” he said.

Mr Samal added: “Due to these efforts, Cambodia has sold carbon credits from the Keo Seima Wildlife Sanctuary, Southern Cardamom National Park and the Tatai Wildlife Sanctuary. The sales yielded $11.6 million which was used to support conservation efforts and community development initiatives.”

At the same time, rangers of the Environment Ministry and BirdLife International Cambodia Programme also found nests of the Oriental Pratincole bird in Boeung Prek Lapouv Protected Landscape located in Takeo province’s Borei Chulsa district.

Bou Vorsak, manager of the BirdLife International Cambodia Programme, said yesterday the Australasian Wader Study Group alerted them of the presence of the nests after they installed a solar transmitter in the area. The species migrated from Australia to breed in Cambodia and West India, he said.

“Two nests of the bird species were found, with two eggs in each nest. Typically, after breeding in Cambodia and India, it will return to Australia to find food,” said Mr Vorsak.

He added rangers and officials of the BirdLife International Cambodia Programme will monitor the bird nests regularly.

According to the Ministry of Environment, Cambodia has been recognised as a country rich in natural resources and biodiversity, with forest cover spanning about 50 percent of the country.

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