Media Resouces
First Việt Nam Bird Race Attracts Impressive Crowd on World Migratory Bird Day
04 Jun 2024

VIETNAM - More than 120 avid nature lovers and photographers gathered in the wetlands of Tràm Chim National Park located in Ðồng Tháp Province in the Mekong Delta to take part in the very first, Việt Nam Bird Race. The race was jointly organised by Tràm Chim National Park, WildTour, Việt Nam Wildlife Photography Club and BirdLife International, with sponsorship from Mapletree Investments and Canon Vietnam, and supported by Lexar and BH Asia. On top of the race, the event also drew over 80 school children from Ðồng Tháp province to participate in an art competition focusing on the birds of Việt Nam, an onsite bird photography exhibition, and a nature walk into the Tràm Chim wetlands.



Teams in action at the Việt Nam Bird Race, photos from Nguyen Truong Sinh

Starting with an evening welcome ceremony on Friday (10 May 2024) by the organising team, the participants set off in teams of three to four on pre-arranged motorboats at 6 am in the morning on Saturday to photograph as many species as possible within Tràm Chim National Park over a 29-hour period. A total of 20 teams took part in the inaugural race, with several international teams from Malaysia, Cambodia and the Philippines joining. The team ‘Chim điên’, represented by local birdwatchers from the Mekong Delta region won the 1st prize in this first-of-its-kind event in Vietnam by photographing 71 species. Lê An Khương, team leader of Chim Dien shared, “We are excited to be part of this race, the first for us in Việt Nam, and to see more than 70 species. Some of our highlights is the Knob-billed Duck and the Collared Scops Owl.”

The Việt Nam Bird Race coincided with the World Migratory Bird Day weekend on May 11, an event held twice a year to celebrate the spectacular movement of birds across the globe every Spring and Autumn. Over this time, millions of migratory birds can be expected to be on their journeys across the Asian continent, moving from wetlands to wetlands along the East Asian-Australasian Flyway.

Global real estate group Mapletree first initiated the concept of this race to Việt Nam in 2023, following a series of successful bird race events held in both Singapore and Malaysia. Mr. Edmund Cheng, Chairman of Mapletree, added, “Mapletree recognises the importance of protecting biodiversity.  We trust our contributions to these markets where we operate will promote awareness and enthusiasm in conserving our migratory birds across Asia”.


Introductions by event emcee, Chuyen Hai Kieu at the closing ceremony, photo from Nguyen Truong Sinh

“We have planned for this Bird Race to coincide with World Migratory Bird Day, and at Tràm Chim, an important wetland in the Mekong Delta used by thousands of migratory species and also Việt Nam’s first EAAFP Flyway Site. It was great to see strong interest in the event from friends and colleagues in south Việt Nam, and even from as far away as Hà Nội”, observed Mr. Nguyen Hoai Bao, director of WildTour and the organising team leader.  

“It is a milestone for migratory bird conservation in Việt Nam at a truly important wetland that we can all be proud of”, shared Dr. Yong Ding Li, the regional flyways coordinator for BirdLife International in Asia.

Tràm Chim National Park is home to a wide array of migratory bird species that thrive in the wetlands, most prominently the Sarus Crane, a globally threatened species and the focus of intensive conservation work in. During September to May, birdwatchers at the National Park may be able to observe the Việt Nam cranes, as well as large flocks of migratory cormorants and ducks such as the Garganey, and shorebirds like the Black-tailed Godwit.

The organisers and supporters of this event plan to build on the success of this year’s event and introduce new elements to attract more bird enthusiasts from across the country. The Việt Nam Bird Race will take place annually and the next iteration is slated to be held in May 2025. Bird photographers, meanwhile, can brace themselves for the upcoming Việt Nam bird photography competition, expected in August 2024 which will be accompanied by a photo exhibition at SC VivoCity in October 2024.

The winning teams of the first ever Việt Nam Bird Race Chim Điên (top) Ô Tác (bottom), photos from Nguyen Truong Sinh

Paintings from the school children’s art competition, photo from Nguyen Truong Sinh

Table 1. List of winning teams, and the number of species observed.


Team name


Total number of species photographed


Chim Điên

Việt Nam



Ô Tác

Việt Nam



Spot-billed Pelican

Việt Nam






Table 2. Winning photographers in photography competition component.




Pham Trung Kien

Pied Kingfisher

Le Hoang Men

Grey-headed Swamphen

Huynh Thanh Danh

Ornate Sunbird

Migratory waterbirds

Vo Trong Trai

Painted Stork

Bo Nong

Knob-billed Duck

Hoang Nhiem

Oriental Darter



Linus Lui
Xabryna Kek
Senior Executive, Corporate Social Responsibility   Assistant Manager, Corporate Communications
Mapletree Investments
Mapletree Investments
Tel: +65 6377 6376
Tel: +65 6377 4608




Ariana Loehr Ong
Whatsapp: +16518953997



Headquartered in Singapore, Mapletree is a global real estate development, investment, capital and property management company committed to sustainability. Its strategic focus is to invest in markets and real estate sectors with good growth potential. By combining its key strengths, the Group has established a track record of award-winning projects, and delivers consistently attractive returns across real estate asset classes. 

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BirdLife International is a partnership of over 122 conservation organisations worldwide covering all continents, landscapes, and seascapes. As a leader in bird conservation, our unique local to global approach enables us to deliver high impact and long-term conservation for the benefit of nature and people. Our mission is to conserve birds, their habitats and global biodiversity, while working with people toward sustainability in the use of natural resources.

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