Personnel and volunteers of the Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm (IPPF) and the Katala Foundation, Inc (KFI) planted 3,000 tree seedlings at the Sta. Lucia sub-colony as part of efforts to rehabilitate the erstwhile breeding area of the critically-endangered Philippine Cockatoo.
Senior Supt. Geraldo Aro, IPPF chief, said Thursday that 150 personnel from the central and sub-colonies in Montible, Inagawan, and Sta. Lucia joined the activity.
“Dito lahat ng personnel ko, more than 150 kami dito, nagkaisa kami na suportahan at tulungan ang Katala Foundation sa pagtatanim syempre iniingatan natin itong area and to also discourage ‘yong mga informal settlers,” he said.
Indira Dayang Lacerna- Widdman, KFI chief operations officer, said they will monitor the growth of the planted seedlings.
“Ang ating hangarin pagkatapos ng tree planting ay talagang mabuhay ang mga kahoy kaya sa isang hektarya na first natin attempt for tree planting, reforestation sa lowland forests ay gumawa kami ng monitoring plots para ma-monitor ang growth and performance,” Widdman said.
Monitoring will be done to ensure the survival and growth of the tree seedlings for the Philippine cockatoos or katala that stay in the area.
“So halimbawa may mga patay, ma-replace at yong growth ay ma-measure para makita natin na may nangyayari kasi itong area ang encroachment ay medyo challenge, open area at saka di rin masyadong nabibisita ng IPPF o BuCor (Bureau of Corrections),” she added.
The 3,000 seedlings planted were grouped into 10 species which are Palawan endemic, including Ipil and also Malungay that is main food of the bird species.