The protection of Vulture nest sites continued successfully in 2009, with fledging success at 100% where nests were protected. This is the highest confirmed number of fledgling vultures since the project started. The project located vulture nests, searching between October to December 2008, and nests were protected from January to April 2009.
The bird nest protection scheme developed at Prek Toal and in the Northern Plains by WCS for waterbird species has been successfully applied to protect vulture nests. This scheme pays local people to protect nests until the chicks have fledged successfully. This simple scheme has proved highly effective in increasing numbers of highly threatened waterbird species elsewhere and appears to be effective for vultures. Vulture nest protection has been improved and two community nest protectors are now assigned to most colonies. This enables minor, but common threats such as fire or predation by macaques to be controlled more easily, as well as those of human origin.
It is hoped that breeding attempts by vultures will increase in Cambodia as a result of improved protection and improved food availability. Adult vultures do not usually breed each year because of the high investment required for breeding and additionally, vultures do not generally breed until aged at least 4-7 years old. Thus, vultures that were fledged in the early stages of the vulture project are not likely to start breeding until 2010.