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Seven new species discovered in Cambodia last year

A member of the Schistura kampucheensis fish species, which was discovered in 2016 in Cambodia.
A member of the Schistura kampucheensis species, which was discovered in 2016 in Cambodia. Myloslav Petrtyl

Seven new species discovered in Cambodia last year

A new species of loach, a long-bodied striped freshwater fish, is one of seven species to have been discovered in 2016 in Cambodia, according to a World Wildlife Fund report released yesterday detailing the discovery of some 115 new Greater Mekong Region species in 2016.

The find was made in a stream in Bokor National Park by Joerg Bohlen, Miloslav Petrtyl, Petra Chaloupkova and Chhouk Borin, a joint team from the University of Phnom Penh and the Czech University of Life Sciences, according to the report.

“Finding a new species is always exciting,” Bohlen is quoted as saying in the report.

According to Bohlen, the loach, named Schistura kampucheensis, is likely relatively widely distributed in the Kingdom, and its population is expected to be stable for the time being.

“They have only been found in smaller streams and not in the mainstream of any larger rivers in the country, many of which see detrimental effects on wildlife due to large hydropower dams and agricultural runoff,” the report reads, noting that so long as the forests the streams run through remain safe from deforestation, the species should continue to thrive.

The report also notes six newly identified plants found in the Kingdom.

Updated: 6:48am, Wednesday 20 December 2017

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