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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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