Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Two poached Sambar deer stuffed

Two poached Sambar deer stuffed

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The Ministry of Environment has immortalised two sambar deer that were hunted and killed in Preah Vihear province last year. Environment ministrty

Two poached Sambar deer stuffed

Specialists from the Ministry of Environment have immortalised two sambar deer that were hunted and killed in Preah Vihear province last year by carefully transforming their carcasses into lifelike statues.

The deer were shot in the Prey Preah Roka Wildlife Sanctuary and succumbed to their wounds in Brame commune’s Boss Thom village last October. When villagers and monks spotted the two dead deer, they organised a religious ceremony to bury them.

Ministry spokesperson Neth Pheaktra told The Post on Monday that the pair of statues was built in collaboration with the provincial Department of Environment and the Cambodia Bird Guide Association.

The purpose of the taxidermy project was to highlight the importance of preserving wild animals and foster a feeling of responsibility for the younger generation to care for them.

Pheaktra said it took more than two months for specialists to modify the carcasses, which weighed more than 200kg each. They had to rinse the deer’s skin and bones, and fashion parts of the skeleton from iron.

“Due to a lack of materials, we used iron frames to hold the sambar deer in standing poses. The height and the length of the torso and legs were measured correctly according to their actual size.

“Later, we took their skin, which was rinsed with salt water and vinegar, attached it to the skeletons and sewed them up.

“We even added cotton to some parts of the skeletons to give them fuller shapes. We inserted eyes, which were provided by a partner in Taiwan, and set antlers on them. We then let them dry and air out in the shade.”

Sambar deer are indigenous to Southeast Asia, South China, and the Indian subcontinent and are listed as a vulnerable species on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List. Their main threats are poachers, who value them for their meat, antlers, skin and bones.

They are greyish brown, with thick and long fur growing around their neck, and their tails are short and black. Male sambar antlers range from 50-100cm long. Their antlers form three points, one in the middle and two longer points on each side.

Sambar can live in jungles or forests and forage for food early in the morning, looking for leaves, branches, fruit and grass.

During the mating season, male sambar lock antlers and fight to control an area, where they will mate with up to eight females.

MOST VIEWED

  • With herd immunity likely in 2022, is Cambodia ready to reopen for tourism?

    The government aims to inoculate 80 per cent of the target population by June next year, giving it a head start among regional peers to reboot the sector but first, it has to do a few things to up its game A sign on a glass

  • Quarantine still a must for all arrivals, in next Covid chapter

    Since early May, an average of five to 10 Cambodian people have died from Covid-19 a day with many others testing positive amid the ongoing community outbreak. At the same time, however, hundreds of patients also recovered a day. The first Covid-19 case in Cambodia was

  • US wants 'full access' to Ream Naval Base

    On June 11, the US embassy's Defense Attaché Colonel Marcus M Ferrara visited Ream Nava Base in coordination with Cambodian officials following the recent approval of Prime minister Hun Sen to allay the concerns on Chinese military presence at the base as raised by US Deputy

  • Jab drive heading to 5 provinces

    The government is set to vaccinate more than 1.2 million people in five provinces after finishing with Phnom Penh and neighbouring Kandal in an ongoing campaign administered by the ministries of Health and National Defence. The five provinces are Preah Sihanouk, Kampong Speu, Takeo, Kampong Cham

  • New immigration bill targets illegal foreigners in Kingdom

    General Department of Immigration (GDI) officials are discussing revisions to the new draft law on immigration to prevent foreigners from entering Cambodia illegally and to supervise those living in the Kingdom more effectively. The revisions draw wide support among civil society organisations. GDI director-general Kirth

  • Kingdom set to be a gold producer

    Cambodia will soon join the roster of gold producing countries after the government announced the commencement of commercial gold mining operations in the Okvau area in southwestern Mondulkiri province's Keo Seima district from June 21. Prime Minister Hun Sen on June 10 announced that after 14 years of