Research on Rodents in Natural Habitat Conducted

AKP Phnom Penh, December 31, 2018 —

A study assessment on rodents in the natural habitat has been conducted in Cambodia recently, according to the Cambodian Journal of Natural History.

This study took place between June 2015 and April 2016, at five sites in Cambodia: the Orona, Pouy Doem Svay and Ochra villages in Keo Seima district, Mondulkiri province, and the Sro Lov Sroung and Rom Chek villages in Sandan district, Kampong Thom province. Each site was visited twice, once during the wet season (June– September 2015) and once in the dry season (January–April 2016).

During that period, 150 traps were deployed in a variety of habitats (including evergreen or semievergreen forest, and cultivated lands) whose locations were recorded using handheld GPS units. A total of 519 individuals were captured, of which 395 during the wet season and 124 during the dry season.

These captured rodents are belonged to 13 different species. Among them, Mus cervicolor, Ratt us tanezumi and Maxomys surifer were the most dominant species in all sites and seasons, representing 94 percent and 85 percent of all individuals captured during the wet and dry season, respectively.

Rodents play an important role in regulating ecosystems, in particular through seed dispersion and predation, and constitute a prey for mesopredators. However, rodents are considered pests in rural areas because they can cause significant damage to crops, especially during episodes of sudden population growth.

Rodents are also carriers or reservoirs for numerous zoonotic diseases that represent a serious threat to human health.

By Khan Sophirom