Our trusted group of Virachey National Park (VNP) rangers recently returned from a Habitat ID-sponsored camera-trap check, and the results are exciting. We were very much looking forward to seeing what kind of wildlife movements occurred during the rainy season, which was especially wet this year. In fact, the rangers attempted to check the cameras in late July but had to turn back due to high, fast-moving rivers. However, they were able to to reach all of the cameras in early October.
Our cameras turned up: a pack of endangered dholes (on three separate cameras), clouded leopards on 3 different cameras, leopard cat, sun bear, large Indian civet, common palm civet, mouse deer, red muntjac, pig-tailed macaques, stump-tailed macaques (this was a very interesting find, which we got on two different cameras, because while villagers have stated they live on the park they had yet to be confirmed by NGOs), gaur (including a photo of a mother and golden calf), Sambar deer, serow, hog badger, Malayan porcupine, wild pig, monitor lizard, owl (species still not known), red jungle fowl, Siamese fireback, lesser adjutant, black bird, and a small mammal we have not yet been able to identify.
Altogether our cameras recorded 17 species of mammal, four birds, and one reptile. We will also be launching two expeditions in January 2015 to install cameras in two highly remote locations inside VNP. In the meantime, have a look at more photos below:
In addition to our Virachey project, we also have a project going with L. Bruce Kekule down in southern Thailand. You can have a look at the first camera trap image we got back of a gorgeous clouded leopard here. Habitat ID field officer Greg McCann wrote a commentary for Mongabay.com about the Thailand project back in August, and you can find that article here.
Finally, we have an Indiegogo campaign going called Boats4Virachey in which we are trying to help the VNP staff acquire four boats with which they can patrol the Sesan River for illegal loggers and poachers transporting their good on the river. VNP currently has no boats for river patrols, and the Sesan snakes its way for nearly 100 kilometers through and around the perimeter of VNP. Your help is greatly appreciated!