Phnom Prich Wildlife Sanctuary | WWF

Phnom Prich Wildlife Sanctuary



Phnom Prich Wildlife Sanctuary (PPWS), roughly 225,000ha (2,225km2) in size, is another critically important protected area in the Eastern Plains in which WWF is supporting government conservation efforts. PPWS was established in 1993 by Royal Decree although former King Sihanouk had already designated Phnom Prich a forest reserve in 1962, originally as a refuge for the now probably extinct Kouprey.
Today, Phnom Prich Wildlife Sanctuary covers 2,225 square kilometres – more than 15% of the total area of Mondulkiri province – and forms part of one of the largest remaining relatively undisturbed landscapes in mainland Southeast Asia. PPWS is notable for its rich habitat diversity, ranging from hilly evergreen forest to open dry dipterocarp woodland and seasonally wet grasslands.

The wildlife sanctuary hosts the core area for the largest Asian elephant herd in eastern Cambodia. Recent camera trapping shows that there is good recruitment with many calves seen in photographs. Wildlife also includes the mega-herbivores banteng and gaur as well as populations of the endangered Eld’s deer. These and other herbivores form the prey base for an unknown number of Indochinese tiger present in the sanctuary, and a survey is underway to estimate tiger population size more accurately. Other key carnivores include leopard and clouded leopard, as well as marbled cat, jungle cat, and dhole. Phnom Prich is one of the last global strongholds for the endangered green peafowl, and the elusive white-winged duck has also been spotted inside the protected area.
 
	© Phan Channa / WWF-Cambodia
Forest landscape in Phnom Prich Wildlife Sanctuary in northeastern Cambodia's Eastern Plains Landscape
© Phan Channa / WWF-Cambodia
 
	© GDANCP / WWF-Cambodia
Find out more about Asian elephants in Cambodia.
© GDANCP / WWF-Cambodia
This wealth of ecosystems is due to the sanctuary’s very diverse elevational structure varying between 80 to 640metres that has created a rich, intricate mosaic of forest habitats: About 50% of Phnom Prich’s forests are dry dipterocarp with an additional 40% semi-evergreen and 10% evergreen forest. These open forest mosaics support globally significant populations of animals characteristic of both dry and dense forest ecosystems, particularly large mammals and waterbirds, many of which have been extirpated from most other parts of Southeast Asia.

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