After 10-year gap, Thai lotuses bloom again
 
, Posted on 19-May-2017


After 10-year gap, Thai lotuses bloom again

Prachuap Khiri Khan : For the first time in a decade a Thai lake has given up its dazzling secret -- the pink blooms of tens of thousands of lotuses.

The sea of colour in Khao Sam Roi Yot national park, three hours south of Bangkok, is a show-stopping feat of nature that has locals hoping for a tourist bonanza.

But it has also sparked warnings over the fragility of the environment with park rangers pleading with people not to visit until the lake is healthy enough to deal with an influx of tourists.

The flowers, considered sacred in Thai culture, are good news for locals who have been ferrying camera-toting visitors through the lotuses which lie in knots on the lake's vast waters.

But "currently they should not come," said head ranger Rungroj Aswakultarin.

"The national park is in the process of restoring the lotuses. When it comes to the right time the park will open them up to the public," he said.

Rungroj's caution is understandable. 

For the last decade the park -- a stunning jumble of lakes, tributaries and towering limestone karsts three hours south of Bangkok -- saw no widespread lotus bloom.

No-one has been able to pinpoint exactly why. 

But officials blame a mixture of drought and pollution from fertilisers and nearby seafood farms.

In recent years rangers have tried to clean up the park and this year were rewarded with a sea of pink flowers.

Thailand struggles to balance its lucrative tourism industry with preserving the environment.

Few countries have experienced the kind of stratospheric growth in tourism. 

In the last decade the number of foreign arrivals has more than doubled from 13.8 million in 2006 to a record 32.5 million last year, growth partly powered by Chinese arrivals.

Those expecting to find the kind of pristine, untouched beaches in tourist brochures are often left disappointed among hordes of visitors.

Thailand's tourism minister has called for the industry to chase fewer holidaymakers but ones with deep pockets. 

This week some 61 national parks, including 25 marine parks, closed to visitors for the monsoon season, an annual move to try and help them recover. 

But some environmentalists have argued the most vulnerable ecosystems need to close for longer, or face much stronger restrictions on visitor numbers. 

 

 
AFP


Related News

Audi voluntarily recalls up to 850,000 diesel vehicles
Jul 21

Audi voluntarily recalls up to 850,000 diesel vehicles

Frankfurt am Main : German luxury carmaker Audi, a Volkswagen subsidiary, issued a voluntary recall of up to 850,000 diesel vehicles Friday, saying it would help reduce engine emissions. "Audi aims to maintain the future viability of diesel engines for its customers and to make a contribution towards improving...

Read More
Hottest day ever in Shanghai as heat wave bakes China
Jul 21

Hottest day ever in Shanghai as heat wave bakes China

Shanghai : Shanghai sweltered under a new record high of 40.9 degrees Centigrade (105 F) on Friday, authorities said as they issued a weather "red alert" over a stubborn heat wave that has plagued much of the country. Hospitals in the city have reported increased numbers of patients suffering from heat-related...

Read More
Food shortage fears as N. Korea faces worst drought in 15 years
Jul 21

Food shortage fears as N. Korea faces worst drought in 15 years

Seoul : North Korea is facing severe food shortages after being hit by its worst drought in more than 15 years, the UN said, calling for urgent food imports to stop children going hungry. A severe lack of rainfall in the first half of this year has badly damaged vital harvests in a country where...

Read More
Bahrain and US hold non-proliferation meeting
Jul 21

Bahrain and US hold non-proliferation meeting

Washington : Bahrain and the United States have held their first bilateral meeting on Non-proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction. The two sides discussed practical challenges and dangers posed by Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) proliferation to world security and peace and exchanged expertise regarding...

Read More
Trump lashes out as presidency hits six-month mark
Jul 21

Trump lashes out as presidency hits six-month mark

Washington : Donald Trump hit the six-month point of his turbulent presidency yesterday in combative style -- lashing out at his own attorney general over the probe into Russia’s alleged election meddling that has dogged him from day one. Since taking office on January 20, Trump has been on a roller...

Read More
US: Iran aided terror attacks in Bahrain
Jul 21

US: Iran aided terror attacks in Bahrain

Washington : Labelling Iran the world’s top government sponsor of terrorism, the US State Department has said that Tehran had provided weapons, funds, and training to Bahraini groups that carried out attacks on the Bahraini security forces.  On January 6, 2016, Bahraini security officials dismantled a...

Read More
Two killed as 6.7-magnitude quake hits Greek, Turkey tourist resorts
Jul 21

Two killed as 6.7-magnitude quake hits Greek, Turkey tourist resorts

Theologos : Two people, likely foreign tourists, were killed and more than 100 people injured on the Greek island of Kos when an earthquake shook popular Greek and Turkish holiday destinations in the Aegean Sea. The epicentre of the shallow 6.7 magnitude quake was some 10.3 kilometres (6.4 miles) south...

Read More
Germany stages raids against child porn suspects
Jul 21

Germany stages raids against child porn suspects

Berlin : German prosecutors said Thursday they had carried out nationwide raids against people believed to possess child pornography, targeting nearly 70 prime suspects. State prosecutors in the western city of Frankfurt said in a statement that the searches of the suspects'...

Read More
Bolivia seizes one ton of cocaine heading to Brazil
Jul 21

Bolivia seizes one ton of cocaine heading to Brazil

Trinidad : Bolivian police have announced the seizure of one ton of cocaine worth some $10 million and destined to be shipped to Brazil. Interior Minister Carlos Romero said at a Wednesday press conference that the cocaine was wrapped in packages and found at a farm near the...

Read More
Germany nets record 3.8-tonne cocaine haul
Jul 21

Germany nets record 3.8-tonne cocaine haul

Berlin : Customs officials in Germany said Thursday they had seized a record haul of cocaine in the northern port city of Hamburg, smuggled from South America in shipping containers. In three sweeps between late March and early May, officers confiscated a total of 3.8 tonnes...

Read More