Following the film viewing of the documentary “Bird of Prey” last Wednesday, former Tacloban Rep. Ferdinand Martin Romualdez took an oath to support conserving and protecting the Philippine Eagle.
“I’m supporting the Department of Environment and Natural Resources in the preservation of the forest because of the habitat of this particular specie, the Philippine Eagle, very rare and endanger, and our national symbol, so we definitely have to continue in enforcing the laws, and the policies of national government will be on our pronouncement on the protection of forest cover, which is the natural habitat of the Philippine Eagle and other species,” said Romualdez in an interview with Manila Standard.
Before being changed into Philippine Eagle in 1987 by then President Ferdinand Marcos, it was called as the monkey-eating eagle as it targeted monkey as its prey.
Later, then President Fidel Ramos declared the Philippine Eagle as the national bird on July 4, 1995 since it was the largest and most powerful eagle in the world and it could be found on the islands of Luzon, Samar, Leyte, and Mindanao.
However, in 2010, the Philippine Eagle was considered as critically endangered specie by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, caused by the continuous deforestation and illegal shooting and hunting in their natural habitats across the country.
“I think we can follow international best practices wherein hunting should be regulated...will be done responsibly and not illegally...” said Romualdez.
Under RA 9147, the Wildlife Act, and RA 6147, the Philippine Eagle is declared as a protected bird which means “the killing, hunting, wounding or taking away of the same and/or destroying, disturbing, or taking away of the nests or eggs of such a bird” is punishable, with the violator risking jail of 12 years apart from hefty fines.
“The laws and policies are very, very well in place. However, the continuing education, internalizing, not just awareness, is also changing the attitudes of people.” said Romualdez.
Now being endorsed by presidential daughter and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio as the next House speaker, Romualdez also promises to engage more in supporting the protection and conserving the Philippine Eagle.
“I was touched by this film, that we can do more. The Philippine Eagle Foundation has done a remarkable job, I will try to engage with them more,” said Romualdez.
COMMENT DISCLAIMER: Reader comments posted on this Web site are not in any way endorsed by Manila Standard. Comments are views by manilastandard.net readers who exercise their right to free expression and they do not necessarily represent or reflect the position or viewpoint of manilastandard.net. While reserving this publication’s right to delete comments that are deemed offensive, indecent or inconsistent with Manila Standard editorial standards, Manila Standard may not be held liable for any false information posted by readers in this comments section.