DESTINATIONS

Tonle Sap Flood Plains

DESTINATIONS

Tonle Sap Flood Plains

Tonle Sap Lake, the biggest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia, provides livelihoods for millions of people. It has a unique hydrology: during the wet season the normal flow of water from the Tonle Sap River into the Mekong reverses, increasing the area of the lake over five times and the depth by a factor of ten. During the flood season a vast area of forest, scrub and grassland is inundated, creating a rich diversity of habitats for fish, birds and mammals. The Tonle Sap provides fish for two million people, and in the floodplain the fertile soils have supported rice farming since Angkorian times.

Prek Toal in the Tonle Sap flooded forest is the largest waterbird colony in Southeast Asia, with more than 100,000 pairs of storks, pelicans, egrets, ibises and herons. The bird numbers have recovered over the last fifteen years after decades of egg collection were brought to a close by employing the poachers as nest guardians. In the Tonle Sap grasslands, the world’s largest population of the Critically Endangered Bengal Florican is found. Less than 1,000 of this special bird remain in the world. The floodplain is also home to Sarus Crane, the tallest flying bird in the world, and many other spectacular bird species, and the critically endangered Eld’s Deer.

SVC works with four communities in the region: Prek Toal, Ang Trapaeng Thmor – a man-made reservoir originally built by slave labor, the grasslands in the Bengal Florican Conservation Area, and the Pursat Grasslands — all within easy reach for day trips from Siem Reap. Explore these individually unique bird and wildlife locations below.

Information

 

Seasons

The lake reaches its peak size in October, up to five times the area and depth of its minimum size, which is reached in June. Lake levels fall rapidly during November-May, which marks the breeding season for the waterbirds.

Habitats

A range of seasonally flooded habitats from flooded forest, to scrub, grasslands and rice paddies, as well as a large area of open water.

BIRDING SITES  Show all sites

Pursat Grasslands

Pursat Grasslands

The floodplain grasslands of Pursat Province support a number of bird species that are absent from the Florican Grasslands closer to ... read more

Prek Toal Core Reserve

Prek Toal Core Reserve

The world famous sanctuary harbours seven species of water birds of global significance: Spot billed Pelican, Milky Stork, Painted ... read more

Bengal Florican Reserves

Bengal Florican Reserves

Designated Bengal Florican Conservation Areas, the seasonally flooded grasslands of Kompong Thom and Siem Reap Provinces contain the ... read more

Ang Trapaeng Thmor Sarus Crane Reserve

Ang Trapaeng Thmor Sarus Crane Reserve

Ang Trapaeng Thmor (ATT) is a vast ‘baray’ or man-made reservoir, originally built by slave labour. Aside from being a staging ground ... read more

FEATURED TOURS  Show all tours

Multiple Days

Critical Cambodia

Cambodia is the last stronghold of a set of magnificent birds that are now so globally rare they are considered Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List. This tour is a superb opportunity …

Multiple Days

Cambodia Birding SuperTour 2018

The now legendary SVC Birding SuperTour is back for 2018! This tour is a totally unique chance to go after all Cambodia’s critically endangered, endangered and endemic species and diversity of habitats.

Northern Plains

Northen Plains Forest EcoSafari

Experience some of the most rare and unique of Cambodia’s wildlife, from rich evergreen to dry forest around the wild and remote Northern Plains. Spend nights deep in a wildlife sanctuary…

FACTS & STORIES  All articles

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