The villagers of the Kampong Phluk village have been suffering from illegal fishing at the Tonle Sap Lake, as the usage of illegal electric equipment is leaving a heavy toll on the fish in the lake. The decreasing water level of the Mekong River that feeds into the river has added insult to injury.
Villagers have felt the impact of this, as their daily income from fishing has declined, forcing many to change their occupation and focus on tourism, as many have started transporting tourists on the boat on the flooded forest in the Tonle Sap Lake to make a living. Despite the change in livelihood, the villagers of Kampong Phluk still have problems and cannot earn a decent income. Meanwhile, from year to year, dozens of hectares of flooded forest are cut down and burned by villagers in the dry season to turn into agricultural land.
Vann Pual, who is a local chieftain, said the most prominent issue facing fishing is illegal fishing, adding that if this was addressed, the fish numbers would increase.