Cambodia’s Tonle Sap Lake receives a record fish release

Mekong giant catfish were among the threatened species freed in Southeast Asia’s largest lake to counter persistent threats.

he gulping fish stopped wriggling once Samol Chhuoy lowered it into the motionless waters of Tonle Sap Lake, causing the reflection of the Mekong giant barb to ripple.

“Bye-bye. Good luck,” said Chhuoy, a Ph.D. student with Wonders of the Mekong, as he released the giant barb, Cambodia’s national fish, into Southeast Asia’s largest freshwater lake.

The last part to disappear into turbidity was the fish’s dorsal fin and an attached lime-green tag – labelled 3415 – with a Khmer-language note instructing fishermen to take the captured fish to local authorities for a cash reward.

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