Areng River Valley
- Thma Bang
Lonely Planet review for Areng River Valley
The nearby Areng River Valley, some of whose inhabitants belong to the Khmer Daeum minority community, is home to the dragonfish (Asian arowana), almost extinct in the wild, and the world's most important population of critically endangered Siamese crocodiles, toothy critters that don't eat people.
In 2007 researchers found 23 Siamese crocodile eggs in a nest on the Areng River, in the Central Cardamoms Protected Forest. They took 12 eggs to a protected site where, 45 days later, all hatched; after being blessed by monks, they were released back into the river. Observations confirmed that all 11 eggs left behind also hatched. It's hard to believe but these 23 hatchlings represent 10% of the entire global population of wild Siamese crocodiles!