Nav: Home

Cambodia moves to protect endangered bird

November 06, 2006

In an effort to protect a large grassland bird from possible extinction, the government of Cambodia has recently moved to set aside more than one hundred square miles of habitat for the Bengal florican, a bird now classified as endangered, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).

The Bengal florican--a type of bustard--is restricted to tiny fragments of grassland scattered across Cambodia, Vietnam, Nepal and India, which are threatened by land conversion for industrial-scale agriculture. The new network of protected areas covers more than 100 square miles near Cambodia's Tonle Sap lake, home to what is thought to be the world's largest remaining population of floricans. Protecting grasslands is also crucial for local human communities, who in turn help to maintain the quality of the habitat through traditional grazing, burning and scrub-clearance.

The decision to protect the bird's habitat was made by Nam Tum, the provincial governor of Cambodia's Kampong Thom province, some 80 miles from the country's capital city Phnom Penh.

"We applaud the governor for taking this action to protect one of Cambodia's endangered bird species," said WCS Country Director Joe Walston of the organization's Cambodia Program. "This population of Bengal floricans represents the best hope for the entire species, so setting aside critical habitat will give the bird a fighting chance."

A recent survey conducted by both WCS and BirdLife International found that the Bengal florican is threatened by the disappearance of grassland habitat in the Kampong Thom and Siem Reap provinces and that the total population for the region, although less than 1000 individuals, is still the largest remaining population for the entire species. The species is listed as Endangered according to the IUCN Red List. Provincial protected areas are also being designed in three other provinces, after which the whole network of sites will be proposed as a national protected area.

The Bengal florican is a largely terrestrial bird that is mostly black in color with white wings. It vocalizes in croaks and a deep, humming sound during its courtship displays.
-end-


Wildlife Conservation Society

Related Wildlife Conservation Society Articles:

Seagrass meadows harbor wildlife for centuries, highlighting need for conservation
Seagrass meadows put down deep roots, persisting in the same spot for hundreds and possibly thousands of years, a new study shows.
Why can't we all get along (like Namibia's pastoralists and wildlife?)
Scientists interviewed pastoralists in Namibia's Namib Desert to see how they felt about conflicts with wildlife, which can include lions and cheetahs preying on livestock and elephants and zebras eating crops.
How does wildlife fare after fires?
Fire ecologists and wildlife specialists at La Trobe University have made key discoveries in how wildlife restores itself after bushfires, and what conservationists can do to assist the process.
Living room conservation: Gaming & virtual reality for insect and ecosystem conservation
Gaming and virtual reality could bridge the gap between urban societies and nature, thereby paving the way to insect conservation by the means of education and participation.
How understanding animal behavior can support wildlife conservation
Researchers from EPFL and the University of Zurich have developed a model that uses data from sensors worn by meerkats to gain a more detailed picture of how animals behave in the wild.
More Wildlife Conservation Society News and Wildlife Conservation Society Current Events

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Erasing The Stigma
Many of us either cope with mental illness or know someone who does. But we still have a hard time talking about it. This hour, TED speakers explore ways to push past — and even erase — the stigma. Guests include musician and comedian Jordan Raskopoulos, neuroscientist and psychiatrist Thomas Insel, psychiatrist Dixon Chibanda, anxiety and depression researcher Olivia Remes, and entrepreneur Sangu Delle.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#537 Science Journalism, Hold the Hype
Everyone's seen a piece of science getting over-exaggerated in the media. Most people would be quick to blame journalists and big media for getting in wrong. In many cases, you'd be right. But there's other sources of hype in science journalism. and one of them can be found in the humble, and little-known press release. We're talking with Chris Chambers about doing science about science journalism, and where the hype creeps in. Related links: The association between exaggeration in health related science news and academic press releases: retrospective observational study Claims of causality in health news: a randomised trial This...