Palace admits need for better wildlife protection after eagle's killing
Louis Bacani (Philstar.com) - August 20, 2015 - 4:24am

MANILA, Philippines - Following the killing of Philippine eagle "Pamana," Malacañang admitted on Thursday that the country needs to strengthen the protection of its wildlife.

Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the Palace is saddened by the news that the critically endangered eagle was found dead earlier this week.

Coloma noted that the Philippine Eagle is an important symbol of the country and that the government continues to work for the conservation of the species.

"Kaya kalungkut-lungkot iyong balita na natagpuang walang buhay itong si Pamana, at nangangahulugan lang niyan na dapat pang pag-ibayuhin ang pagsisikap ng pamahalaan at ng mga environment conservationists na kinakailangang pag-igihan pa iyong ating pagbibigay ng proteksyon sa ating mga endangered species," Coloma said in an interview over state-run radio.

Pamana was killed just two months after it was released into the wild on June 12, the Philippine Independence Day.

The eagle was previously in captivity since it had to be nursed back to health from gunshot wounds three years ago.

Dennis Salvador, executive director of the Philippine Eagle Foundation, said the carcass of the eagle was retrieved Sunday on a mountain range in southern Davao Oriental with a gunshot wound to the chest.

Salvador said the foundation is working with police and local officials to arrest those behind the killing, which happened despite an information drive among the communities in the area about the high-profile bird.

"It's really very disturbing," Salvador said.

Killing a Philippine eagle is punishable by up to 12 years in jail.

Only about 400 adult pairs are estimated left of the Philippine eagle, which is endemic to the Philippines. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature classifies the species as "critically endangered." - with AP

COLOMA COMMUNICATIONS SECRETARY HERMINIO COLOMA JR. CONSERVATION OF NATURE DAVAO ORIENTAL DENNIS SALVADOR EAGLE INTERNATIONAL UNION PAMANA PHILIPPINE EAGLE PHILIPPINE EAGLE FOUNDATION QUOT
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