Care for Rescued Wildlife
When our Wildlife Rapid Rescue Team rescues animals from poachers, traffickers, markets or restaurants, those that are healthy and suited for return to the wild are released into appropriate habitat in protected forest and other areas. However, many of the rescued animals are injured, sick or too young for life in the wild and need the help of our specialists at Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Center to aid in their recovery and rehabilitation. Wildlife Alliance ensures that the rescued animals receive proper medical attention and care prior to their release. No animal is ever turned away, including those that need long-term care and protection.
At Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Center, Wildlife Alliance animal husbandry specialists, veterinarians, and care takers assist in the feeding and care of animals and operations at this government-run facility set over 6,000 acres of regenerating forest. The Center currently houses over 1,200 animals from 102 species including Asian elephants, tigers, Pileated gibbons, Siamese crocodiles, Malayan sun bears, among many others. All of the animals living at PTWRC have been rescued from the illegal wildlife trade or are victims of habitat loss — without a berth at the rescue center, they would all be dead.
Since arriving at PTWRC ten years ago, Wildlife Alliance has worked assiduously to improve the wildlife enclosures, standards of animal care and medical treatment to help transform the center into one of the leading wildlife rescue centers in Southeast Asia. The partnership between Wildlife Alliance and the Cambodian Forestry Administration has produced a rescue center where animals can thrive, breed, and successfully raise their own young. Approximately 300,000 Cambodian and international visitors visit PTWRC each year to see the rescued wildlife and learn about conservation efforts in Cambodia. Visitors enjoy an unparalleled opportunity to view dozens of Southeast Asia’s most endangered and vulnerable animals. Learn how you can visit the Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Center to see our wildlife rehabilitation work firsthand at our Visit Us page.
Wildlife Alliance has also created a Wildlife Rehabilitation Station in Koh Kong Province where animals that are deemed suitable for release into the wild are relocated to a forested enclosure in an appropriate area of habitat into which they will be released. They are cared for here for many months in order that they become familiar with the area and relearn their wild instinctual behavior. When the animals are ready for release, the door to the enclosure is left open and the animals are free to leave at will. We continue to provide hands-off assistance and supplementary food at the enclosure location for as long as it is necessary.
Released animals will be monitored using various methods such as visual observation, track identification, camera traps, and radio telemetry to ensure release strategies are successful and the animals are able to survive. We make every effort to familiarize the animals with their new habitat before release and give them proper support as they grow comfortable with their new skills. Binturongs, sun bears, macaques, and birds are just a few of the animals that have begun the second phase of their life here.
In 2013, the Wildlife Release Project at Angkor Archaeological Park was initated with the release of two endangered gibbons. This historic event marks the beginning of a new endeavor between Wildlife Alliance, the Forestry Administration and the Apsara Authority that manages the World Heritage site, to repopulate the barren forest surrounding the high-profile tourism destination.
The priority for our Care for Rescued Wildlife Program is to continue developing and implementing rehabilitation and release programs for many of the animals we rescue, while continuing to feed and care for the animals that need to call PTWRC home.