Cambodia finds new bird species

AFP-JIJI

A new species of bird with a distinctive orange-red colored tuft of feathers on its head has been found in Cambodia’s populous capital city, conservationists said Wednesday.

The remarkable discovery of the Cambodian tailorbird, or orthotomus chaktomuk, in Phnom Penh — and several other locations including a construction site just outside of the city of 1.5 million people — has astounded conservationists.

The small bird, which has a black-feathered throat and is the size of the more common wren, lives in thick, lowland scrub in Phnom Penh and other sites in the nearby floodplain, which the Wildlife Conversation Society said had kept it concealed for so long.

Known for its “distinct plumage and a loud call,” the bird was discovered by scientists from conservation groups, including the Wildlife Conversation Society and BirdLife International.

The bird was named after a Phnom Penh riverfront area “chaktomuk” — the conjunction of three rivers — where it was found, the Wildlife Conversation Society said.