Hunt on for killer of Philippine Eagle in Mt. Apo reserve

Subscribe Now August 25, 2014 at 08:49am

The hunt is on for the killer of a female Philippine Eagle (Pithecophaga jefferyi) in Davao City.

Environment Secretary Ramon J.P. Paje has ordered environment officials in Davao City to look into the killing of the the mother eagle that was found dead in Mount Apo in Davao City on Saturday. The killing orphaned a 7-month-old eaglet.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) chief has issued a statement condemning the killing of the eagle. He had ordered the DENR officials in Davao region to coordinate with local authorities to track down the perpetrator.

“We are appalled by this awful news. It is sad to think that while we are trying to save the endangered Philippine Eagle from extinction, there are those who are undermining our conservation efforts,” Paje said.

Paje said the eagle, which appeared to have been shot and killed by a hunter, was among those being monitored by the DENR and the Philippine Eagle Foundation (PEF) for years.

In a report by the PEF, the decomposing body of the Philippine eagle was retrieved on August 14 at Barangay Kapatagan, outside the protection area 10 kilometers away from the eagle’s nesting site in Sitio Mitondo, Sibulan, Davao City. The eagle bore a crack at its keel bone, giving suspicion the bird was shot to death.

The report also indicated that the mother eagle left a 7-month-old hatchling, prompting the DENR chief to commit a fund assistance to ensure the survival of the young eagle.

The Biodiversity Management Bureau with the PEF will administer supplemental feeding of the young eagle as it is now only being fed by the father, Paje said.

Meanwhile, Paje urged the Protected Area Management Board of Mount Apo to institute stricter measures to prevent a repeat of the incident.

He also directed the DENR regional office to conduct a massive information campaign in the area.

Also known as the monkey-eating eagle, the Philippine Eagle is considered as one of the biggest, rarest and most powerful birds in the world—the reason it has been declared the country’s national bird.

It is critically endangered, mainly due to massive loss of habitat caused by deforestation in most of its range.

Hunting and killing of the Philippine Eagle is punishable under Republic Act 6147, or the Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act, by 12 years in jail and heavy fines.


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