Bees Unlimited Siem Reap

The Plight of Cambodia's Water Snakes

The Plight of Cambodia's Water Snakes

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On a world-wide scale, Cambodia’s water snake harvest is second-to-none; and, while some of the snakes are killed for their skin, the majority end up as raw meat for crocodiles; and cooked, deep-fried, or dry-roasted meat for Cambodians.

The snakes in question are the common Puff-faced and Rainbow Water Snakes; the endemic Tonle Sap Snake; and the Bocourt’s Water Snake. Others, such as the Plumbeous Snake, the odd-looking Tentacled Snake--even Reticulated Pythons--are also taken.

A serious attempt to document and research the plight of Tonle Sap water snakes took place between 2004 and 2006. The fact remains, however, that the wholesale slaughter of water snakes continues here unabated, with an estimated four million-plus specimens destroyed annually.

A word about Bocourt’s Water Snake... reported by conservationists to be rare and endangered. From the countless images of this snake displayed on the following pages, all taken from a local market in Siem Reap, it could be argued that conservationists have not done all their homework. Rare, it is certainly not. Endangered, it certainly is; as are other snakes in the Tonle Sap, all systematically slaughtered--embryos, immature, and adult; male and female; all.

Unauthorized use of any or all of these photos without consent of the author is prohibited. Dani Jump©.

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