Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Takeo’s Prek Lapouv nature reserve at risk from drought

Takeo’s Prek Lapouv nature reserve at risk from drought

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Boeung Prek Lapouv Protected Landscape Area in Takeo province in October. BIRDLIFE INTERNATIONAL CAMBODIA

Takeo’s Prek Lapouv nature reserve at risk from drought

BirdLife International Cambodia has expressed concern that the water level in Boeung Prek Lapouv Protected Landscape Area in Takeo province may not reach last year’s level, putting animals foraging for food during the dry season at risk.

The organisation said on October 17 that the reservoir in the protected area located in the province’s Borei Cholsar and Koh Andet districts has also not received enough water compared to previous years.

The water level has only risen to about 1m this month, while in October last year it rose to about 3m.

“We have observed that the water level has been declining from year to year. The water has been slow to flood and recedes quickly. It has created concerns for this wetland,” it said.

“When the water level rises too slowly, storing water for cranes and other birds for foraging in the dry season will be difficult as the entire area dries out quickly, forcing cranes to move out of the area.”

The NGO said the low flood levels and a short flooding period will also have a negative impact on the management of invasive plants, namely thorn bush. Under these conditions, the plants will have a higher regeneration rate after the water recedes. Water is the main factor used to control the growth of the plants.

“We hope that the water will continue to rise, because through our team’s daily record, the water level rises by about 2cm a day and continues to rise,” it said.

Bou Vorsak, BirdLife International Cambodia programme manager, told The Post on October 18 that the protected area received water from the Bassac River and conditions had changed over the last five years. He said many farmers grew dry season rice and pumped water from streams to irrigate rice paddies.

“While the water received was less and flowed out faster and has been pumped to rice fields in the last five years, we have also seen that the water has dried up quickly. It means the water in the protected area has been severely depleted.

“We previously made water from the reservoir flow naturally so that water from the reservoir would not flow down to streams too quickly.

Vorsak added that the reservoir had been ready for three years. This year is the fourth year for the 16ha water storage in its test phase. After three years of testing, the reservoir can hold water for only one month, as water leaked from the reservoir and there were high evaporation levels.

MOST VIEWED

  • No payment required for travellers taking rapid Covid tests on arrival

    Ministry of Health officials said there would be no payment required for the rapid Covid-19 tests given to travellers who arrive in Cambodia from November 15 onwards after the quarantine requirement is lifted for fully vaccinated people. Health ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine told The Post on

  • General’s gun smuggling ring busted

    The Military Police sent six military officers to court on November 22 to face prosecution for possession of 105 illegal rifles and arms smuggling, while investigators say they are still hunting down additional accomplices. Sao Sokha, deputy commander of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces and commander of

  • 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,”

  • More Cambodians studying in US

    The number of Cambodian students studying at US colleges and universities in 2020-21 increased by 14.3 per cent over the previous year despite the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a recent US government report. The 2021 Open Doors report on International Educational Exchange showed that 848 Cambodian students studied

  • Cambodia, Thailand to discuss border reopening

    Cambodian authorities from provinces along the Cambodia-Thailand border will meet with Thai counterparts to discuss reopening border checkpoints to facilitate travel, transfer of products and cross-border trade between the two countries. Banteay Meanchey provincial deputy governor Ly Sary said on November 22 that the provincial administration

  • Police arrest Canadian with 167kg of drugs

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on November 15 placed a Canadian national in pre-trial detention in connection with smuggling and possessing 167kg of illegal drugs. Deputy National Police chief in charge of anti-drug enforcement Mak Chito told The Post on November 15 that the man was arrested