The Phnom Penh Post –
Scientists from Wonders of the Mekong and the Fisheries Administration (FiA) have set up 36 underwater acoustic receivers along the upper reaches of the Mekong River in Cambodia to better track the movements of a stingray believed to be the largest freshwater fish ever caught, excluding beluga sturgeons, which also occupy saltwater environments.
On June 13, a 42-year-old Cambodian fisherman, Moul Thun, a resident of Koh Preah village, Siem Bok district, Stung Treng province, caught the female giant freshwater stingray (Urogymnus polylepis), a species listed as “endangered” in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List.
The specimen reportedly weighed 300kg and measured 398cm from its snout to the tip of its tail, with a width of 220cm, which Wonders of the Mekong scientists noted dethroned the previous record-holder, a 293kg Mekong giant catfish caught in Thailand in 2005.
The stingray was released back into the Mekong on the evening of June 14, after it was weighed, fitted with an acoustic tag at the base of its tail, and named “Boramy” – which translates as “full moon” in Khmer – for the dusk moon shining on the horizon during its release, according to Chea Seila, the programme manager for the Wonders of the Mekong in Cambodia.