Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Monk, forest chief proclaims his love for wildlife, decries poachers

Monk, forest chief proclaims his love for wildlife, decries poachers

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A community forest chief in Oddar Meanchey province has appealed to poachers to stop destroying wildlife and to all Cambodians to respect and love the Kingdom’s rich biodiversity. Bun Saluth via facebook

Monk, forest chief proclaims his love for wildlife, decries poachers

A community forest chief in Oddar Meanchey province has appealed to poachers to stop destroying wildlife and to all Cambodians to respect and love the Kingdom’s rich biodiversity.

Speaking to The Post on Monday, the Venerable Bun Saluth, head of the Sorng Rukhavorn community forest, expressed concern over the ongoing killing of wildlife in Cambodia.

Saluth said last year, he found several specimens of rare wildlife caught in illegal traps during his daily visits to the forest. The ensnared animals included four bantengs, five fallow deers and two peacocks.

Many other animals suffer a similar fate in Cambodia, he noted. At least, 10 to 20 boars are killed in this fashion every week, many of them by electric traps. Forest rangers also routinely encounter the headless bodies of bantengs, whose horns are coveted by poachers.

“My goal is to teach people to feel pity for these animals and love them instead. The Sorng Rukhavorn community forest has nearly 100 bantengs and we need to protect them so the next generation can also get to know them.

“I am very concerned about the situation here and want to ask those who are killing wildlife for financial gain to please stop and think about how precious these animals are. We must all strive to protect rare wildlife.”

Sorng Rukhavorn community forest consists of 30,254ha in three districts – Anlong Veng, Chongkal and Samrong.

Despite the presence of poachers, Saluth said in the last four years new animal species are making Sorng Rukhavorn community forest their home.

Oddar Meanchey’s Department of Environment director Phuong Lina acknowledged that poaching is a problem in Sorng Rukhavorn community forest, along with logging, but noted that such activities are declining.

“Last year, crimes against wildlife in Sorng Rukhavorn community forest decreased compared to 2018,” she said, adding that the department is fighting the problem by increasing public awareness.

She said several people have been caught poaching or logging illegally in recent years. Perpetrators were given a fine or sent to court.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hun Sen asks Cambodians to believe in government

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday asked citizens and investors to trust that the government will overcome the challenges brought about by Covid-19 and the loss of the EU’s Everything But Arms (EBA) scheme. Speaking to reporters at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh,

  • Westerdam passenger ‘never had’ Covid-19

    The US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said the US citizen that allegedly tested positive in Malaysia after travelling on the Westerdam was never infected with Covid-19 in the first place. In an article published in the newspaper USA Today on Friday, CDC

  • ‘Ghost staff’ found, $1.7M returned to state coffers

    The Ministry of Civil Service said more than seven billion riel ($1.7 million) in salaries for civil servants was returned to the state last year after it discovered that the books had been cooked to pay ‘ghost officials’. This is despite claims by the Ministry of

  • Woman wanted for killing own son

    Police in Phnom Penh’s Meanchey district are on the lookout for a woman who allegedly hacked her son to death on Sunday in Stung Meanchey III commune. District police chief Meng Vimeandara identified the son as Chan Sokhom, 32. “The offender can’t escape forever.

  • H5N1 also poses deadly threat, ministry warns

    The Ministry of Health’s Communicable Disease Control (CDC) department has called on citizens to excise caution over H5N1 or bird flu that is spreading in the southern province of Vietnam. In a Facebook post, the department announced that it has made a series

  • Malaysia in turmoil

    Malaysian Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad has done it again. At the centre of two days of high drama and political manoeuvring, he has, wittingly or not, contributed to shaking Malaysia, and further causing its equities market to fall nearly three per cent. The drama