Bird conservationist has affirmed that Asian Openbills remain present in Boeung Prek Lapouv Protected Landscape in Takeo province.

“Our field team concluded there is a good sign for the coming breeding season (2021-2022), the bird will not leave and the number of nests will increase,” said BirdLife International Cambodia Programme in its recent news report.

During the 2020 nesting season, the population of Asian Openbill foraged in Boeung Prek Lapouv protected landscape increased to thousand birds and at least 2,186 nests were found on the 270 flooded trees. The nesting of Asian Openbill is the new record during the last 15 years.

With support from BirdLife, regular nests monitoring and protection were conducted by the site-based rangers and field monitoring team, the latest hatching nests were recorded in April 2021.

Among the 2,186 nests, 85 percent were successfully hatched while about 15 percent failed because of flood, storm, and illegal egg collections. The successfully hatched nest equaled to about 5,580 chicks, 10 percent died of sickness and other factors, and about 40 percent flown out from the nests and roosted to other areas due to lack of water sources and food.

Nowadays, about 50 percent of chicks – some 2,790 birds – stay in nests as they hatched late and are unable to fly far away from their parents. “We notice that the parents collected small tree branches for repairing the nests and some of them start to build the new nests on higher branches,” the same source said.

The Boeung Prek Lapouv Wetland Conservation and Management Project is implemented in collaboration between the Ministry of Environment, Takeo Provincial Department of Environment, BirdLife International Cambodia Programme, NatureLife Cambodia, and WWT.

Boeng Prek Lapov Protected Landscape, one of the largest remnants of seasonally inundated grasslands in the Lower Mekong Region, is over 8,300 hectares in size. It is one of 40 globally important bird areas identified as key sites for conservation and one of three sarus crane (Grus antigone) conservation areas.

Besides Asian Openbill, some other birds including the Black-crowned Night Heron, Little Cormorant, Grey Heron, Purple Heron and Little Egret have also nested in this area.

Source: Agency Kampuchea Press

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