Police on Saturday arrested four villagers who had been selling wild birds from their bicycles along National Road 6 in Kampong Cham’s Batheay district.
“The villagers were taken to the district police office, where they were educated about the negative effects of selling the protected birds,” Batheay district deputy police chief Sok Soul said.
They had been warned not to sell wild birds several times before, however, and had not heeded police warnings.
The sellers maintained that they sold only domesticated chickens and ducks and not wild ones, Soul said.
He added: “Selling wild birds disturbs the public order and brings about the birds’ extinction.”
Moreover, he said, selling the birds on a national road risks traffic accidents as cars could potentially swipe the vendors on the side of the road.
“We arrested them because they sold the wild birds. It is a warning for them not to sell animals along the road; otherwise, they will be punished.
The confiscated birds included turtle doves, wild teals and various other ducks and water birds found around the Tonle Sap lake, he said.
Several wild bird species, including the white-winged duck, are endangered in Cambodia, according to the World Wide Fund for Nature.
To contact the reporter on this story: Kim Yuthana at firstname.lastname@example.org