Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Plan adopted to prevent Kingdom’s Asian elephants from extinction

Plan adopted to prevent Kingdom’s Asian elephants from extinction

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Between 400 and 600 of Asian elephants are believed to remain in Cambodia, mainly in the Cardamom Mountains. FFI

Plan adopted to prevent Kingdom’s Asian elephants from extinction

The Ministry of Environment, in collaboration with Fauna & Flora International (FFI), has adopted an action plan to save Asian elephants in Cambodia from extinction.

The conservation plan was compiled by the ministry’s General Directorate of Administration for Nature Conservation and Protection (GDANCP) and all stakeholders with technical support from the FFI’s Cambodian Elephant Conservation Group (CECG).

Established in 2015 by the FFI in cooperation with the ministry and the Forestry Administration, the CECG aims to conserve the endangered species by stabilising and increasing its populations throughout Cambodia.

GDANCP director-general Meas Sophal said the action plan is a significant milestone.

“We developed this action plan, the first for Asian elephants in Cambodia, that will guide effective protection of the country’s most iconic species,” he said.

Classified as endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List, Asian elephants face a “very high risk” of extinction.

Between 400 and 600 of them are believed to remain in Cambodia and are concentrated mainly in the Cardamom Mountains in the southwest of the country and the eastern plains of Mondulkiri province.

A smaller number of the species can also be found in other parts of the Kingdom, such as the northern plains.

The IUCN said the areas are known for their rich biodiversity, which is ideal for the elephants and other endangered species. However, it said habitat degradation due to deforestation has taken a toll on elephant populations and their long-term survival.

Elephant calves have also fallen victim to snares, which hinder population recovery.

Sophal said the action plan is vital to safeguarding the “cultural heritage icon” for future generations.

“The action plan aims to strengthen the management of Asian elephants with involvement from all stakeholders so that their populations are protected and able to recover, not least in the protected area and biodiversity conservation corridor network, which covers 7.2 million hectares, or 42 per cent, of the country’s surface,” he said.

Asian elephants can reach 6.4m in length and 3m at the shoulder. They weigh up to five tonnes.

They are smaller than African elephants and have a single “finger” on the upper lips of their trunks, while African elephants have a second one on the lower lip, according to the World Wildlife Fund.

MOST VIEWED

  • Prince Norodom Ranariddh passes away at 77

    Prince Norodom Ranariddh, the second son of the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk and former First Prime Minister of Cambodia, has passed away in France at the age of 77. “Samdech Krom Preah Norodom Ranariddh has passed away this morning in France just after 9am Paris-time,”

  • Cambodia purchases 4 million Molnupiravir tablets

    Cambodia has arranged for the purchase of four million US-made Molnupiravir pills – enough to treat 100,000 Covid-19 patients – even though the current rate of daily infections in Cambodia remains low. The medicine will be distributed to state hospitals, pharmacies and private clinics, according to the Samdech

  • Rise in planned flights lifts travel hopes

    Six airlines have applied to resume flights in December, while two others have put in for additional flights and routes, according to State Secretariat of Civil Aviation (SSCA) head Mao Havannall on November 29. These account for 43 new weekly domestic and international flights in December, up 16

  • Is Cambodia’s travel sector in for another cheerless holiday season?

    The travel and tourism sector was heaving back to life as borders started to reopen, promising a festive vibe for the holidays and New Year. But Omicron and other Covid-related issues are threatening to close the year on a bleak note ‘Seems [like] Covid-19 won’

  • Cambodia planning new border checkpoint at Thma Da

    Cambodia is looking into the possibility of opening a new Thma Da Border Checkpoint with Thailand to boost trade and tourism. The Ministry of Public Works and Transport said on December 4 that Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol led a technical working group

  • Hun Sen: Manet to be candidate for prime minister

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has reaffirmed that his oldest son Hun Manet will be his successor as Prime Minister if he is elected. Speaking during the inauguration of a new sewage treatment facility in Preah Sihanouk province on December 2, Hun Sen said Manet will be