Environmental law enforcement authorities on Wednesday said they are doubling their efforts against the resurgence of illegal wildlife poaching activities in southern Palawan.
Jovic Fabello, the spokesperson of the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff (PCSDS), said alongside the Bantay Palawan Task Force (BPTF) and their other partner agencies, they are focusing again their efforts in the province’s southern part.
“Based on intelligence reports, there is a resurgence of illegal wildlife poaching activities in the south,” he told Palawan News.
Fabello said in the past they had already curbed wildlife poaching, specifically of birds, in the area.
“That’s why we have focused our efforts in the north and also in the islands,” he added.
Most of the apprehensions in the north included timber poaching and use of illegal chainsaws and compressors.
Fabello said the need to step up the environmental law enforcement in southern Palawan requires them to re-strategize, considering their limited number of enforcers and the wide area of their coverage.
“But this time, we’re aided by a high-tech information system, made possible by the USAID’s Protect Wildlife project,” he assured.
The joint elements of the PCSD Staff, BPTF, Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit and Philippine National Police Maritime on Monday launched an apprehension, leading to the confiscation of 35 heads of Talking Mynah (locally, Kiyaw) and 12 heads of Blue-naped Parrot (locally, Pikoy or Loro) in Quezon town.
These critically endangered bird species were seized from the possession of Ariel Rapana of Sitio Marirong, Barangay Malatgao, and Ariel Bustamante of Sitio Sumil, Bgy. Sowangan.
“They (wildlife handlers) gathered these birds one by one, and they were supposed to ship them to Batangas and then to Manila. Actually, the first batch had already been shipped,” he said.
Rapana and Bustamante have been charged for violating Sec. 27 (f) collecting, hunting or possessing wildlife, their by-products, and derivatives, under the Republic Act 9147 or the Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act.
Meanwhile, the confiscated wildlife had been turned over to the Palawan Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Center for custody and disposition.