Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Emergency rescue appeal launched to save the world's second largest Siamese crocodile population

Hydroelectric dam threatens importat population of Critically Endangered Siamese crocodiles
March 2013. Fauna & Flora International has launched an emergency public appeal to raise funds to save a critical breeding population of some of the world's last remaining Siamese crocodiles.

Hydropower dam
The construction of a hydropower dam in Cambodia's Cardamom Mountains will obliterate the second largest population of Siamese crocodiles if they are not immediately relocated.

5% of world population
On 8 February, it was announced that a hydropower dam will be built by the China Guodian Corporation on the Areng River. The dam will erase the river's resident Critically Endangered Siamese crocodiles - at least 5% of the global breeding population - and force six villages to relocate. The company aims to begin construction in July.

The Areng River is well known to Fauna & Flora International (FFI). For more than a decade, the Cambodian Crocodile Conservation Programme, a joint initiative between FFI and the Cambodian Government's Forestry Administration, has been working with indigenous people to conserve the Critically Endangered Siamese crocodiles. Through the support of this programme the local communities have successfully protected crocodiles from poaching, habitat degradation and human conflict.

The Areng River crocodile population is now stable at 30-40 adults and subadults. As the second largest known Siamese crocodile population in the world, this site is one of only a handful where this species breeds. This important population, and FFI's conservation work here, was featured by National Geographic and the BBC's Saving Planet Earth.


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