After a long wait, I finally got a chance to observe our very own Philippine Eagle in the wild. Grabe ang gara at ang laki talaga niya!
The first time I saw this kind was after my Mt. Apo climb way back 1995 (?), in Davao Phil Eagle Center. But this time, we were able to join a team of observers from the Phil Eagle Foundation who were tasked to track, monitor and record relevant data of how this magnificent bird live in the wild.
It's sad that this apex predator is losing its habitat, which is probably the main cause of its 'critically endangered' status. Now if we can only plant more trees, or conserve our forest - w/c means - less wood furniture demand from us, then baka sakaling we can help a bit in preserving our national bird from extinction.
Some new bits that I've recently learned: This eagle learns to hunt and kill on its own, without getting lessons from its parents. Unlike lions or other mammal predators, Phil Eagle seems to 'know' the how-to's thru genetic programming. Also interesting, is the fact that they 'know' that they're not suppose to eat mammal's hair (hence, their pluck-before-eating routine), nor eat their kill's intestine. Aba, may arte rin pala siya :)
You want to actively help? You can volunteer as field observer (and get a chance to see this bird in the wild) or participate in educational campaigns - visit http://www.philippineeagle.org/
(Photo courtesy of Neil Mallari)