Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Second Irrawaddy dolphin calf seen in Mekong River

Second Irrawaddy dolphin calf seen in Mekong River

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A dolphin calf was seen in Mekong River in Stung Treng province last week. WWF

Second Irrawaddy dolphin calf seen in Mekong River

A six-day-old Irrawaddy dolphin calf was spotted among four adults at Kampi Resort along the Mekong River in Kratie province on the evening of March 5, World Wildlife Fund-Cambodia said via Facebook.

Researchers from the Fisheries Administration and WWF-Cambodia lit up with elation at the scene of the second dolphin calf recorded this year, following a sighting of a week-old calf at a natural sanctuary in Stung Treng province late last month.

“The current events represent one of the most encouraging encounters by the research team as part of their dolphin monitoring and photo-ID based surveys,” WWF-Cambodia said.

WWF-Cambodia public affairs director Tep Asnarith told The Post on March 7 that the Irrawaddy dolphin is critically endangered according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List.

He stressed that each dolphin is critical to the continuation of this valuable freshwater species.

“I, as well as WWF, am very excited about having logged two new baby dolphins in 2021,” he said.

According to Asnarith, the presence of the dolphins indicates ecological quality and high levels of biodiversity along the Mekong River which can support human, animal and plant life that is dependent on the river ecosystem.

Last year, researchers registered nine newborn dolphin calves and 13 in 2019, WWF-Cambodia figures show.

Separately, Ratanakkiri provincial Department of Environment rangers on March 6 handed over two leopard-cat kittens (Prionailurus bengalensis) – another rare and vulnerable species – to BirdLife International.

Department head Phon Khemrin told The Post that the kittens had been found a day earlier by officials stationed at Border Police Battalion 623, who said the parents had fled attack by village dogs.

Its chief Nin Nan turned the kittens over to the rangers, he said, pointing out that the police outpost is located in Nhang commune’s Tang Chi village in the province’s Andong Meas district.

“Without the technical expertise to take care of these young animals, our team was obliged to hand them over to a partner organisation [BirdLife] to take care of them for the time being,” Khemrin said.

BirdLife International’s Cambodia Programme Manager Bou Vorsak told The Post that the kittens were now in the care of his team at the Ratanakkiri branch. “We will send them to the Angkor Centre for Conservation of Biodiversity to look after them, and when they grow up and have the ability to forage on their own, we will release them into protected areas.”


  • 12th Cambodia int’l film festival to see return of Hollywood star

    Phnom Penh is set to come alive with the magic of cinema as the highly anticipated 12th Cambodia International Film Festival (CIFF) takes centre stage. Boasting an impressive line-up of 188 films from 23 countries, including captivating shorts, feature films, documentaries and animation, the festival promises an

  • Brawl marrs football final as Indonesian take gold in seven goal thriller

    The Indonesian men's U22 men national football team were crowned champions of the 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia, defeating Thailand 5-2 in extra time on May 16 at Olympic National Stadium in Phnom Penh. The match was marred by an ugly incident that occured in the 91

  • Bareknuckle champion wants Kun Khmer fighter

    Dave Leduc, who is the current openweight Lethwei boxing champion in Myanmar, has announced that he will travel to Cambodia this year to challenge SEA Games gold medallist Prum Samnang any time that is convenient, after their planned match later this month in Slovakia was

  • Candlelight Party disqualified from July general election

    The National Election Committee (NEC) has disqualified the Candlelight Party (CP) from contesting the upcoming general election, citing a lack of valid documentation. NEC spokesman Khorn Keomono said the CP failed to fulfil one of the three main requirements: including original documentation proving their registration

  • Thong Khon calls for orderly SEA Games closing ceremony

    Thong Khon, Minister of Tourism and permanent vice-president of the Cambodia SEA Games Organising Committee (CAMSOC), calls on all people who have received tickets to the May 17 closing ceremony of the biennial multi-sports extravaganza at the Morodok Techo National Stadium to ensure that the event

  • 1.4 billion dollar Phnom Penh-Bavet expressway due in four years

    The Government, through the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, has officially signed a public-private partnership agreement with a private company for the construction of a Phnom Penh-Bavet Expressway project that will connect the capital to Svay Rieng province. The budget for the project is