San Mariano, Isabela –A rescued Philippine eagle (Pithecophaga jefferyi) was released on May 6, here.
Mayor Edgar T.of San Mariano who was in custody of the eagle disclosed that sometime in April 2010, a wounded rare Philippine eagle was brought to him by a local hunter. He was informed that the bird was ensnared in a trap meant for deer and pig at Diwagao, Dinapigue. Mayor Go took care and ensured the welfare of the bird while in captivity.
The 6 kilograms female eagle undergone a series of physical and clinical assessment by the veterinarians of the DENR-Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB) and the Provincial Veterinary Office of San Mariano, in collaboration with the Bureau of Animal Industry-Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory and was found fit for release.
After more than a year in captivity, the Philippine eagle, named ”Raquel” in memory of the daughter of Mayor Go who recently passed away finally claimed her freedom. It was released in Barangay Casala at the foot of Northern Sierra Madre. A radio and satellite telemetry tracking device provided by Executive Director Dennis Salvador of the Philippine Eagle Foundation was placed on the bird for monitoring purposes.
PAWB Director Theresa Mundita Lim, who led the preparatory arrangements for the bird’s release, expressed deep appreciation to Mayor Go for rescuing and taking care of the bird. “Without your intervention, the bird might not have survived”, she said.
Philippine Tropical Forest Conservation Foundation (PTFCF) chaired by Mr. Lorenzo Tan provided technical, financial and other logistical support for the release of the eagle.
The Philippine Eagle Foundation, a long-term partner of the government in the conservation of the species and which has long years of experience in rescuing and releasing eagles in Mindanao, will assist in the post-release monitoring of the bird for a certain period of time.
Regional Technical Director for PAWCZMS Jovito Layugan who represented Regional Executive Director Benjamin Tumaliuan of DENR-Region II during the releasing of eagle appeals to the communities of San Mariano and its neighboring towns to report to the local government or to the nearest DENR field office any observation on the released bird.
PENRO William Savella expressed gratitude to all the organizations and individuals involved in the planning and implementation of the release program for the bird. He commended the Mabuwaya Foundation on their community development projects, environmental conservation and awareness efforts in San Mariano that paved the way in preparing the community for their involvement in monitoring the Philippine eagle.
Bonifacio Dumayo, Barangay Captain of Casala and his constituents committed to act as guardians on the well being of the bird in a covenant signing ceremony following “Raquel’s” release
Officials of the regional and provincial offices of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, PAWB in Quezon City together with some local officials of this town with the collaborative effort of non-government conservation partners such as the PEF, PTFCF and Mabuwaya Foundation have successfully released the bird to its natural habitat.
“Raquel” is the 8th Philippine Eagle rescued and released nationwide in the past twelve years and the second in Luzon. “Linglingay” was the first bird released also in Northern Sierra Madre Mountain Ranges within San Mariano in 2003.
The Philippine eagle is one of the endangered species and the capture and possession of which is strictly prohibited under Republic Act 9147 otherwise known as the Philippine Wildlife and Conservation Act.