(Watch the male pangolin’s release in a video provided by the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff)
A male Philippine pangolin (Manis culionensis) was released into the wild on Sunday after being repatriated to Palawan through a private airline.
The pangolin was reportedly found in the Department of Labor and Employment’s Occupational Safety and Health Center (DOLE-OSHC) dormitory in North Avenue, Quezon City by a dormitory resident named Joward Calle.
According to Jovic Fabello, spokesperson for the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff (PCSDS), the pangolin was found to be in a good condition when it was reported to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB). The bureau then coordinated with the PCSDS on the pangolin’s flight back to Palawan.
“Ni-report siya sa DENR-BMB noong November 30 after siyang makita. Dumating siya rito sa Puerto at around 9:35 a.m., sa Cebu Pacific,” Fabello said in a phone interview on Sunday.
“So far healthy naman siya. Mukhang may nag-aalaga nga sa kanya kasi nga in good condition siya. Inaalam pa sa ngayon kung paano siya nakapunta doon sa area na ‘yon,” he added.
Fabello added that the PCSDS will not be examining the contents of the pangolin’s stomach to see if its contents still have traces of Palawan soil, since the pangolin may be stressed by the examination. A similar examination was done on another pangolin that was repatriated to Palawan in August this year. The previous pangolin was found wandering in Alabang Town Center in Muntinlupa City and was returned to Palawan through the efforts of the PCSDS, the DENR-BMB, and a local veterinarian.
Fabello added that after initial examinations, the pangolin was released into its natural habitat on the same day.
The Philippine pangolin is a critically endangered mammal that is endemic to Palawan. It is believed that pangolins are being poached for its scales, which will be used for Chinese medicine. Reports have also surfaced about pangolins wandering around Metro Manila, far away from its natural forest habitat.