Power line project threatens highly endangered bird: org

The proposed construction of a power line across the Tonle Sap floodplain further threatens the critically endangered Bengal Florican. Over half of the global population may be put at risk. PHOTO SUPPLIED

Phak Seangly, The Phnom Penh Post
Mon, 12 December 2016

A proposed power transmission line to be constructed at the edge of the Tonle Sap Floodplain Protected Landscape as early as next year will pose a new threat to a critically endangered bird species known as the Bengal Florican, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).

In a press release issued on Friday, the NGO says plans by state-owned Electricite du Cambodge (EdC) for a power line to be built close to the protected landscape may cause the approximately 432 Bengal Floricans in the country – out of a global population of fewer than 800 – to further dwindle.

“Power transmission lines are a particular problem for large, slow-flying birds that cannot manoeuvre easily, such as bustards,” it reads. “Bustards, which include the Bengal Florican, are among the most likely birds to collide with overhead lines, due to having a narrow binocular view when looking ahead.”

The power line is expected to run from Kampong Cham to Siem Reap, and from Siem Reap to Battambang, according to WCS Cambodia’s senior technical adviser, Simon Mahood.

“Re-routing the power line in areas where it would otherwise go close to the sites where the Bengal Floricans breed is the most effective way to prevent or reduce the chance of Bengal Floricans being killed by flying into the power line,” he said. (more…)

Posted on: December 11, 2016 8:30 pm