Our coverage of environment and climate change issues, including “cold” cases of environment…
The Philippine Eagle (scientific name: Pithecophaga jefferyi ) symbolizes the grit and strength of the Filipino people amidst adversity.
In celebration of the Philippine Eagle Week, June 4 to 10, 12 journalists visited The Philippine Eagle Center, an 8.4-hectare sanctuary of over 30 eagles at the foot of Mt. Apo in Malagos, Baguio District, Davao City. The visit was organized by the Philippine Network of Environment Journalists and VERA Files supported by Internews' Earth Journalism Network.
The Philippine Eagle Center (PEC) is managed by the Philippine Eagle Foundation (PEF), a private, non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation of the Philippine Eagle.
Lace Viojan, an education officer of the PEF, was on hand to give an educational tour of the place on a rainy afternoon.
Although a newbie in PEF, Viojan, an ecologist, has worked in Samar and Leyte as a volunteer rescuing eagles.
The PEC shelters not only the critically endangered Philippine Eagle (Pithecophaga jefferyi), but also other predatory birds, such as the Philippine Serpent Eagle (Spilornis holospilus) and the White Breasted Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster).
As a predator, an eagle preys on the weak and eats other animals to survive. Viojan said predators are not necessarily “bad guys” as portrayed in the movies. Predation is a mechanism that drives good genetic diversity within the prey population. Predators do the job of culling out the weak or injured, she said.
The PEC counts 400 pairs of Philippine Eagles left in the country, found only on the islands of Luzon, Samar, Leyte, and Mindanao.
In the following slides, meet Sinag, Fighter, Sam, Diamante and others in the Philippine Eagle Center.