Cardamom Mountains Elephant Survey

Why is this project so important?

Cambodia’s elephant populations are worryingly small and fragmented. Indeed, the size of the population needs to be better determined to aid future monitoring and management. With increasing habitat loss and fragmentation, human-elephant conflict (HEC) is rising in many areas, and emerging in areas where there was previously none. Beyond direct threats, elephant conservation in Cambodia is limited by understanding of the species’ conservation needs.

Project Partners: Fauna and Flora International (FFI) & Cambodian Elephant Conservation Group (CECG)

Duration: 2015 – February 2017

Cambodian elephant population: 400 – 600

Project goal:

The project’s long term goal is to stabilize and increase the number of wild Asian elephants in Cambodia.

The project’s immediate goal is to:

(1) Estimate the size of Asian elephant populations within the South Eastern Cardamom Mountains landscape

(2) Better understand population trends

(3) Inform future monitoring programmes and management responses, and

(4) Support communities to mitigate human-elephant conflict

What we do

Fauna and Flora International (FFI) and the Cambodian Elephant Conservation Group (CECG), our partners in the field, have made substantial progress in planning and designing an elephant DNA study and population analysis. Human-elephant conflict support in the South West and North of Cambodia is ongoing with the project team responding to twenty incidents of human-elephant conflict over a three month period. A bell alarm fence was erected in one community, while four hundred fireworks and eighteen flashlights were provided to protect two other villages from raiding elephants. The aim is to introduce human-elephant conflict measures to the villages before elephant numbers grow.