Monday, January 2, 2017

129th national park

Though they are not really connected to the administrative subdivisions, I am also collecting the protected areas in my XML files and thus also monitor the Royal Gazette for any newly declared national park or other protected areas. In the final week of 2016, three new protected areas have been officially declared, most notably the 129th national park Nam Tok Chet Sao Noi (อุทยานแห่งชาติน้ำตกเจ็ดสาวน้อย) in Saraburi province. As the declaration of national parks requires a Royal order, this is also the first such announcement processed by me which was signed by the the new king.

Like the 18 other national parks which are pending their official declaration, the area around the Chet Sao Noi waterfall has been unofficially treated as a national park for several years already, as can be seen by the street view of the entrance from 2014. The park covers an area of 26238 rai (41.9802 km²) at the border between Saraburi and Nakhon Ratchasima province and consists of the three forests Thap Khwang (ป่าทับกวาง)and Muak Lek Pleng 1 (ป่ามวกเหล็ก แปลงที่ ๑) - protected in 1984 as a national forest [Gazette] and Dong Phaya Yen (ป่าดงพญาเย็น) created in 1962 [Gazette]. Interestingly, both were not among those national forest announcements I had collected before, the title of the announcements had changed slightly and thus they slipped my previous searches.

The other two new protected areas are non-hunting areas, less protected than National Parks and thus the announcements are done by the Ministry of National Resources and Environment itself. The two new areas are
  • Pa Ban Hong non-hunting area (เขตห้ามล่าสัตว์ป่าป่าบ้านโฮง) covering 379 km² in the border of Chiang Mai and Lamphun province [Gazette].
  • Doi Phu Kha non-hunting area (เขตห้ามล่าสัตว์ป่าดอยภูคา) covering 119 km² in Nan province [Gazette]. This area wasn't listed as a non-hunting area under creation in any of the lists I found so far, so I am not sure if the official name is correct - the announcement only lists the names of the forests included, not the name of the non-hunting area created.

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