Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - USAID promotes conservation of endangered bird species in Prey Lang

USAID promotes conservation of endangered bird species in Prey Lang

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Lesser Adjutant (large wading stork) congregate at a watering hole (trapeang). GREENING PREY LANG PROJECT

USAID promotes conservation of endangered bird species in Prey Lang

The US Agency for International Development's “Greening Prey Lang Project” (USAID-GPLP) is working with local communities and other partners to conserve the oriental darter and other endangered species found in the Prey Lang extended landscape.

According to USAID-GPLP, the oriental darter is a cormorant-like bird that is most at home in and around wetlands because its feathers are semi-permeable to water and this helps the bird when it is swimming and hunting fish.

It is sometimes called the snakebird because of its long thin neck and head that stay visible above the water while the rest of the bird is submerged below.

It lives in lakes, swamps and river habitats. This bird is found throughout the year in Cambodia and has large breeding grounds in the Prek Toal area of Tonle Sap Lake and some smaller areas in the north of Cambodia.

“This bird has a long neck like a snake, long beak that is sharp as a sword, black colour, long tail and long white stripes on the back,” it said.

It also noted that key bird species in the Prey Lang extended landscape are threatened by poaching, habitat destruction, and land encroachment.

Birds that lay their eggs on the ground are vulnerable to predators such as dogs, humans and other wildlife, while those that build their nests in trees are vulnerable to logging, poaching and land clearance for agriculture or settlement, it said.

Bird nest guardians protect against some of these threats and during the last breeding season between June 2020 and May 2021, a total of 127 nests and 232 chicks of endangered bird species were monitored and protected under the bird nest protection programme in Preah Vihear province supported by USAID-GPLP.

“During the year, the programme recruited 54 bird nest protectors from local villages to act as bird nest protectors during the breeding season, safeguarding the nesting birds and their chicks from threats. Species monitored this year included Giant Ibis, White-shouldered Ibis, Sarus Crane, Lesser Adjutant, Woolly-necked Stork, Black-necked Stork, Masked Finfoot, White-winged Duck, and Red-headed Vulture,” it said.

USAID-GPLP pays community members a daily rate for each nest they watch over. Depending on the bird species, the monitoring period takes up to three months, beginning with finding active nests with eggs and ending when the chicks having successfully fledged.

Numerous studies have shown the bird nest programme to be very effective. By engaging local communities in conservation, the programme not only improves biodiversity conservation and ecosystem health, but it also improves community livelihoods and strengthens inclusive and effective landscape governance.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hun Sen: Full country reopening to be decided in two weeks

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has announced that if the Covid-19 situation remains stable for 15 consecutive days from the end of the October 5-7 Pchum Ben public holiday, Cambodia will reopen fully, albeit in the context of Covid-19 whereby people have to adjust their lives to

  • Cambodia sets new Covid-19 quarantine rules

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Will Evergrande change the way Chinese developers do business in Cambodia?

    China’s property sector policy has exposed the grim financial condition of real estate developers including those operating in Cambodia, which raises questions over the viability of their projects and business going forward The dark blue netting draping over one of Yuetai Group Co Ltd’

  • Phnom Penh governor: Show Covid-19 vaccination cards, or else

    Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng late on October 5 issued a directive requiring all people aged 18 and over and the parents of children aged 6-17 to produce Covid-19 vaccination cards when entering schools, markets, malls, marts, eateries and other business establishments that have been permitted

  • Cambodia seeks probe into 'false reports' on Hun Sen's alleged Cypriot passport

    Minister of Justice Koeut Rith on September 6 wrote a letter to his Cypriot counterpart Stephie Dracos requesting cooperation in investigating and providing the truth in relation to the "exaggerative and false allegations" that Prime Minister Hun Sen holds a Cypriot passport. In his letter, the

  • 'Pandora Papers' expose leaders' offshore millions

    More than a dozen heads of state and government, from Jordan to Azerbaijan, Kenya and the Czech Republic, have used offshore tax havens to hide assets worth hundreds of millions of dollars, according to a far-reaching new investigation by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (