Endangered Philippine eagle shot dead shortly after release

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Philippine eagles are an endangered species and are known for their shaggy crests

A rare Philippine eagle has been shot dead just two months after it was released back into the wild following treatment for a previous gunshot wound, Philippine conservationists say. The bird, called Pamana, was found in a forest in the south, close to where it had been released. There are thought to be only 400 pairs of Philippine eagles left in the wild.

There are an estimated 400 pairs of the endangered birds in the wild and are faced with threats of deforestation and hunting. Salvador said that 90 percent of Philippine Eagles that they release in the wild are being shot.

“Shooting is probably the biggest threat to young Philippine Eagles in the wild now. Young birds, which are one to six years old, are very inquisitive and are not often frightened by people. So that is when they become really vulnerable,” he said.

In 2013, a male Philippine Eagle named “Minalwang” was also shot dead two months after he was released in the wild following two years of rehabilitation.

The Philippine eagle is considered critically endangered because of the loss of its natural rainforest habitat and hunting throughout the Philippines.

Whoever shot it could be jailed for up to 12 years and fined up to 1 million pesos (£39,000; $61,000).

Pamana, whose name means “heritage” in Tagalog, was first brought into the Philippine Eagle Center in 2012 with gunshot wounds, and spent the next three years recuperating.

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Philippine eagles, one of the world’s largest eagle species, can grow to a height of 1m (3.3ft) and can have a wingspan of up to 2m

She was released at the forest in Mount Hamihuitan on 12 June – the Philippines’ Independence Day. Her tracking device later indicated she had stopped moving.

She was found on Wednesday in an advanced state of decomposition, said the Philippine Inquirer.

“Unfortunately, one person with a gun thinks he can shoot anything,” the Philippine Eagle Foundation’s executive director Joseph Salvador told reporters.

 

1 comment to Endangered Philippine eagle shot dead shortly after release

  • Julie Wright

    This is so sad, when will people realise we need all these predators to keep the natural balance. I think countries around the world need to find some way of introducing a way forward to protect all endangered species,