April 24, 2020

Rare killer whales spotted at Thai marine park

File picture from November, 2016, of a whale (front) and her calf feeding on anchovies in the Gulf of Thailand, off the coast of Samut Sakhon province. - AFP

BANGKOK (Xinhua): Killer whales seen frolicking in Thailand’s Andaman Sea once again delighted marine specialists, calling Wednesday’s Earth Day a very significant day.

Thailand’s Department of National Park, Wildlife and Plant Conservation on Thursday reported on its social media page, that a pod of more than 10 killer whales has been sighted on Earth Day for the first time in the Lanta marine national park, off Thailand’s southern province of Krabi.

Marine specialist Dr Thon Thamrongnawasawat, who is also vice dean of the faculty of fisheries at Kasetsart University, said with delight that “the new norm is not only about health, but is also about learning that enough is enough and allowing space four our friends in the sea, so they can live with us on Earth.”

Thon said that in retrospect to the Covid-19 pandemic which is still causing havoc around the world, rare marine species have returned to Thai waters, especially the Andaman, after a break in human maritime activity, caused by a sharp drop in tourists as a result of Covid-19 pandemic.

The department posted pictures of whales, between three and four metres long, swimming in the Andaman Sea about 400m from the beach of Rok Islet.

“The killer whales, or Orca, feed on small fish and squid. They are listed as a Category 1 protected species in Thailand,” said in the Department’s Facebook page.

Other than whales, about 20 dugongs were also spotted in the no-hunting territory around Libong Island, off the southern province of Trang, according to the department.


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