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Vulture census reveals positive signs, population increases

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Vultures enjoying the carcass of a buffalo at the ‘Vulture Restaurant’ in Dongplet village, Preah Vihear province, in 2020. Heng Chivoan

Vulture census reveals positive signs, population increases

The Ministry of Environment announced that the Kingdom’s vulture population has grown in the past year.

In a report, the ministry said that thanks to the efforts of the Cambodian Vulture Conservation Working Group (CVCWG), the increase – of 13 birds – was a positive sign, but warned that continued attention is required for the protection and conservation of this endangered species.

The 2022 census showed that Cambodia had a total of 134 vultures: 71 white-rumped vultures, 44 slender-billed vultures and 19 red-headed vultures.

The ministry said the 2021 national vulture census identified a total of 121 individuals: 20 red-headed vultures, 66 white-rumped, 35 slender-billed and 20 red-headed varieties.

Ministry spokesman Neth Pheaktra said the increase in vulture numbers was good news for conservationists and for biodiversity, both in Cambodia and around the world.

He commended the ministry’s research team and all partner organisations of the CVCWG, as well as rangers, for protecting and conserving the natural habitats of vultures.

“We commend all participants for making this natural area even safer for vultures and all wildlife. They work hard to protect the forest as habitats, food and water sources for wildlife and biodiversity of all kinds,” he added.

He appealed to all relevant parties to further protect and conserve these endangered species.

“We must protect habitats, mitigate pollution, bring an end to trapping and hunting, and stop other human activities that affect the ecosystem. Our natural heritage must be protected for our future generations,” he said.

The CVCWG is made up of the environment ministry; Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries; Angkor Centre for Conservation of Biodiversity (ACCB); NatureLife Cambodia, Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) Cambodia and World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Cambodia.


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