Philippine Eagles fly to Singapore for Breeding Conservation

As part of the Philippine government’s bid to protect and conserve the critically-endangered Philippine Eagle, a pair named Geothermica and Sambisig has been flown to Singapore yesterday, June 4, in time for the celebration of the 21st Philippine Eagle Week (June 4-10).

Carrying Philippine passports, the said pair is the first of their species to be covered by a wildlife loan agreement for adoption by a foreign country. The passports are said to emphasize the Philippine identity of both eagles and that they remain the property of the Philippine government.

Geothermica is a 15-year-old male Philippine eagle born on January 7, 2004, while Sambisig is a 16-year-old female born on November 17, 2002. Both were hatched and reared at the Philippine Eagle Foundation (PEF) in Davao City.

The pair will be housed in Jurong Bird Park for the next 10 years for captive breeding under a Wildlife Loan Agreement between the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS), one of the leading zoological institutions in the world.

DENR Secretary Roy A. Cimatu said that these species are “ideal ambassadors of Philippine biodiversity, perfect for the purpose of generating awareness on the urgent need for conservation.”

“Sending Geothermica and Sambisig to Singapore acts as biosecurity measure to ensure the survival of the species and as a fallback population in the event of catastrophic events like disease outbreaks or extreme natural calamities taking place in their Philippine habitats,” he added.

On board flight PR 507, Philippine Airlines (PAL) airlifted the two eagles from Davao. DENR Assistant Secretary Ricardo Calderon, together with Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary for Asian and Pacific Affairs Meynardo Montealegre, PEF Chairman Edgar Chua and PEF Executive Director Dennis Salvador led the ceremonial “send-off” at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2.

Calderon said that with the partnership with the Wildlife Reserves Singapore and Singapore government commemorating 50 years of diplomatic relationship, the wildlife loan agreement highlighted the importance of the Philippine eagle.

According to the DENR, there are only around 400 pairs of the Philippine eagle left in the wild. With the threat of extinction, sending off the Philippine eagle pair is considered an insurance that the species will not be wiped out in case of a deadly disease outbreak in the Philippines.

 

#HaringIbon #PhilippineEagleWeekCelebration

#PhilippineEnvironmentMonthCelebration #TayoAngKalikasan

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Environmental Warriors’ ideas laid through paper and lens

11-22 makakalikhasan contest winners

As the DENR XI believes in the power of youth’s profound and innovative ideas in matters of environmental protection, it once again conducted the “MakakaLIKHAsan” an Essay and Photo Contest. It is a two-day annual event that aims to earn the active participation and engagement of young environmental warriors through their piece of writing and photo material.

The essay writing revolves in the theme “One Planet. One Nation: Sustaining Green Actions for a Safer Climate.” to which, the New Corella National High School bagged the top place.

Its writer, Mary Chris D. Agarma, states in her piece entitled “Code Green: Diagnosing the Vital Signs of the Earth” that “we [people] are the leukocytes of the Earth and must work hand in hand as a nation and as a planet to protect the only home we have. The earth has long been diagnosed of a severe disease. Like treating chronic illness, necessary measures must be applied.” Strict implementation of environmental laws, reforestation and to look for other sources of renewable energy to not exhaust biofuel are among the writer’s recommendations.

The champion ended her piece with a diagnosis that the earth is “severely destructed, in need of immediate attention, care and restoration.”

For the photo contest, the Ateneo de Davao University which held the championship for two (2) consecutive years has once again bagged the top place. For this year, its entry was photographed by Anton Miguel Balagot with an engraved caption “Carbon Sequestration: A Quest for Life.”

Congratulations to all the participants- our young and creative environmental warriors and to their supportive coaches!

The DENR XI is looking forward to having you again.

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