Microchips to be removed from wild dugongs

Microchips to be removed from wild dugongs
PHOTO: ST

Relevant authorities will on Thursday start an operation to remove microchip tags from three wild dugongs off Trang. The task is expected to take a few days.

The chips are being removed after an order by the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP), which acted on a complaint from local fishermen.

The fishermen complained to the DNP, because they believe a dugong found caught in a fishing net got trapped because of a three-metre cable attached to the tag. They believe the tag makes it more difficult for the sea cows to feed on marine grass and increases their risk of getting caught.

The Had Chao Mai National Park embedded the tags last month in the hope of studying the animals' behaviour and getting information that would allow the authorities to demarcate safety zones for them.

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