The Lampi Marine National Park in Myeik Archipelago of Bokpyin Township of Taninthayi Region conserves wild animals, birds, marine animals and plants having mangroves, evergreen and beach forests, and it also welcomes the local and foreign travellers with its natural beauty of the sea and richness in biodiversity.
Lampi Marine National Park is the only marine national park in Myanmar. It was designated as a marine national park on 28 February 1996 and ASEAN Heritage Park in 2013 and declared an Important Bird Area (IBA). There are Salon villages on Lampi Island and they contribute to the eco-tourism industry. The places are crowded with visitors between November and March.
“We conducted the 10-year Habitat Restoration Action Plan at the Lampi Marine National Park since 2018/19. We collected bird populations starting from 2020 and mostly in October and March.
The processes are different from the data collection system of other wildlife sanctuaries. We conduct regular patrols, awareness campaigns and research. We draft a 10-year management plan for the national park and cooperate with Italian organizations to conserve biodiversity. We also work with Tatmadaw (Navy) to curb the illegal trade. The eco-tourism runs as usual from October to March with local and foreign visitors. The park always welcomes visitors in the open season as they can study the biodiversity, marine life, coral reef, three types of forests, rare bird species and culture of Salon people there,” said U Kyi Oo, warden of the park.
The Salon people reside in Makyongalet village on Bocho Island, Kophaw Island and Galet Island.
The local and foreign travellers can observe the living style, tradition and culture of Salon people and enjoy the sunset beauty of the ocean, the bedtime of the Hornbill, bats that search for food at night, the ecosystem of the park, water birds and animals, fish and oyster species, sandy beach, conduct research on coral and black coral and take Kayak boat to enjoy the beauty of the national park.
Moreover, the people can make boat tours along the bay, channel and two rivers that flow throughout the year and watch the beauty of nearby islands and the ocean from the hills that are 455 metres above sea level.
The evergreen forest, sandy beach and mangroves are concentrated there and are home to bottlenose dolphins, whale sharks, hornbills and Fly fox bats.
The officials conducted research together with an Italy-based NGO for the development of a national park and the research processes were suspended during the outbreak of COVID-19. At that time, they launched vocational training sessions on mixed crop cultivation, sewing, language and value-added products derived from waste to the Salon people to support basic tourism.
A total of 188 bird species live in the marine national park in addition to over 60 species of mangroves, mammals, water birds, resident birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, crabs, snails, mussels, clams, sea cucumbers, seaweed and rare bird species. The International Union for Conservation of Nature also announced that they found seven new bird species and 17 endangered trees in the national park. — Nyein Thu (MNA)/KTZH