No “katala” poaching incident has been reported in Narra town for the past three years.
Renato Gonzaga, protected area superintendent (PASu) of the Rasa Island Wildlife Sanctuary, said Thursday that for the past three years, there was no incident of poaching on Rasa Island, Brgy. Panacan 1 reported to their office.
Narra is considered as the “Katala Capital of the World” because of the population of around 500 Philippine cockatoos inhabiting Rasa Island.
Katala is the local name of the Philippine cockatoo, a critically endangered small psittacine with a helmet crest and red undertail coverts.
Gonzaga said that his office is now intensifying knowledge dissemination, conservation, and protection of the Katala to maintain the zero poaching.
“Actually, noong nandito na ako three years pa lang naman ako dito wala pa naman akong na-e-encounter na ganyan, mga poaching incidents. Since na-declare itong protected area halos wala ng reported incident na may nahuhuling katala kung meron man sa labas na ng Narra ‘yon,” Gonzaga said during a tour on Rasa invited by the Narra Municipal Tourism Office.
Gonzaga also added that the Narranons are really concerned about the conservation of the Philippine cockatoos and makes an immediate report to their office once they see a katala being poached or sold.
“Kasi dito very concerned ang mga tao, nagrereport sila sa office halimbawa may nakita man silang mga Katala na tinitirador ng mga bata. Immediately nililigtas namin kapag na-injure tinitreat naman namin sila,” he pointed out.
Narra has a high level of community awareness, on how to conserve the katala and other wildlife,” he added.
Despite this, he said that they continuously raise the awareness and conservation for the katala and other wildlife.
Anna Rose Agullo, education coordinator of the Philippine Cockatoo Conservation Program, said that the success of the conservation and the program is in the joint efforts of the local government, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and other private sectors like PCCP.
As part of the conservation and protection of the Katalas in the town, the local government and the other stakeholders will promote various activities for information dissemination like the yearly celebration of the Katala Festival.
Katala is the flagship wildlife species of Narra.