Six Nests of Globally Vulnerable Lesser Adjutant Stork Discovered in Keo Seima Wildlife Sanctuary
AKP Phnom Penh, September 18, 2018 —
The Wildlife Monitoring Team of Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and Ministry of Environment (MoE) discovered six Lesser Adjutant stork nests, in the north of Keo Seima Wildlife Sanctuary, according to the WCS’ news release.
It is the first time that this globally vulnerable species has been found breeding in this protected area, it said, adding that they were discovered since Aug. 10, 2018.
The Lesser Adjutant (Leptoptilos javanicus) is a large stork reaching more than one metre (51 inches) in height with a wingspan exceeding two metres. Despite a global upper population estimate of 10,000, these birds are experiencing rapid population declines, and their range is undergoing widespread contraction throughout Asia. As a result, the Lesser Adjutant is listed as “Vulnerable” on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Lesser Adjutants nest colonially, preferring the tallest trees in a habitat consisting of a patchwork of deciduous dipterocarps. The Eastern and Northern Plains of Cambodia boasts some of the best remaining examples of this highly threatened mosaic habitat.
“Keo Seima Wildlife Sanctuary is an important habitat for these vulnerable species for surviving and breeding, due to the presence of dry forests, grasslands and wetlands in which they can feed on fish, frogs, reptiles, snails and small mammals. Currently, deforestation has been a threat to, and severely affecting, the nesting habitat of Lesser Adjutant, particularly during the breeding season. Thus, protecting their nesting sites is very important to ensure the survival of this rare species,” said Mr. Sot Vandoeun, WCS’ Wildlife Monitoring Coordinator.
By Khan Sophirom