Thailand’s Marine Tragedy: Dugong Deaths in the Andaman Sea


In a concerning environmental development, the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) of Thailand has reported the deaths of at least 20 dugongs in the Andaman Sea since the beginning of 2024.

These gentle marine mammals, often referred to as “sea cows,” have succumbed to various threats, including marine traffic, fishing activities, and other undetermined causes.

Trang, known as a traditional habitat for dugongs, is facing a decline in seagrass beds— the primary food source for these creatures. Rising sea temperatures have been identified as a contributing factor to this decrease.

In search of sustenance, some dugongs have migrated to the waters of Krabi and Phang Nga. However, these areas are fraught with hazards, as the dugongs are unaccustomed to the busy marine traffic and the ongoing fishing operations.

In response to this crisis, the DMCR has designated ten critical areas for intensified monitoring and conservation efforts to protect the remaining dugong population and their vital seagrass habitats. These areas include:

– **Tang Ken Bay** in Phuket
– **Pa Klok Bay** in Phuket
– **Klong Kean Bay** in Phang Nga
– **Mhak Island** in Phang Nga
– **Chong Lard** on Yao Island in Phang Nga
– **Tha Phom Bay** in Krabi
– **Ao Nang (Nang Bay)** in Krabi
– **Nam Mao Bay** in Krabi
– **Si Boya Island**, **Pu Island** in Krabi
– **Lanta Island** in Krabi

The DMCR’s initiative underscores the urgent need to address the environmental challenges facing Thailand’s marine life and to ensure the survival of the endangered dugong species.

Related article:

Two dugongs were found dead on a beach in Mueang Phang Nga district on Saturday (May 11th).

Goongnang Suksawat
Goong Nang is a News Translator who has worked professionally for multiple news organizations in Thailand for many years and has worked with The Pattaya News for more than four years. Specializes primarily in local news for Phuket, Pattaya, and also some national news, with emphasis on translation between Thai to English and working as an intermediary between reporters and English-speaking writers. Originally from Nakhon Si Thammarat, but lives in Phuket and Krabi except when commuting between the three.