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Flora and Fauna

Philippine Department of Tourism commits to conserve rare bird species

The Department of Tourism (DOT) now joins Prince Albert II of Monaco and Sir David Attenborough in the Birdlife Species Champions honour roll, as it seals its commitment to the conservation of one of the rarest birds in the world, the Cebu Flowerpecker (Dicaeum quadricolor), only found in the Philippines.

Philippine Department of Tourism

Philippine Department of Tourism

Secretary Ace Durano recently signed an agreement with Birdlife International’s Head of Conservation Richard Grimmet, to firm up their support to protect this endangered bird species, endemic to the island of Cebu. (more…)

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Cebu Flowerpecker is species champion in United Kingdom bird fair

The country’s Cebu Flowerpecker recently received the Bird Life Species Champion award in the recently held British Birdwatching Fair 2009 in Oakham, Rutland, United Kingdom (UK).

Known as the ‘Woodstock of Birders,’ the British Birdwatching Fair is an exclusive event where all sectors in birdwatching and wildlife conservation from all over the world gather.

Presented by BirdLife International, the award was given to the Department of Tourism (DOT) which was also named as the Species Champion for the said endemic bird.

“This award seals our country’s status as a premier birdwatching site in the global birders’ community. More importantly, it will draw further support for biodiversity awareness and wildlife preservation from our local sectors,” said Tourism Secretary Ace Durano.

The Cebu Flowerpecker has been rediscovered by renowned birder and zoologist Dr. Rob Timmins who saw it in 1992, 100 years after its last sighting. The bird was found in the village of Tabunan, and small numbers can also be seen in Nug-As and Mount Lantoy, also in Cebu. Presently, an estimated 100 birds of this specie may be living in the area. (more…)

Butterfly Haven

I think I’ve developed a new kind of phobia — being scared that summer will soon be over and I have not made the most out of it. So being the proactive person that I am, I have taken advantage of free and/or long weekends to soak in as much sun and swim in as much water. And I think I’ve been imposing myself on Mia too.

Just about an hour and thirty minutes away from Manila, a butterfly haven is nestled in the heart of Pulilan, Bulacan in an unassuming old house. The place doubles as a wedding reception site, a resort, a tourist spot, and even movie/TV locations. (more…)

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Coming soon in Nasugbu Batangas: Hamilo Coast

hamilo coast pico de loro cove

The SM Investment Corporation is presently developing its biggest project to date: the 1,800-hectare Hamilo Coast in Nasugbu, Batangas. Those of us who are accustomed to the giant edifices that are the SM Malls will find in Hamilo Coast a refreshing development. It will showcase to residents and tourists 13 natural coves, a sweeping 32-kilometer coastline and a number of lush hills, cliffs and valleys boasting of virgin flora and fauna. Activities in the site will be geared towards eco-tourism including diving, hiking, mountain climbing, kayaking, sailing and the like. (more…)

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Ifugao town to cultivate jathropha

jatropha curcas to be planted in ifugaoAlfonso Lista, Ifugao — To increase farmer’s income and in support to the national government’s development of renewable energy, the local government unit here will start propagating Jatropha curcas locally known as ‘tagumbao’.

Jatropha curcas also called physic nut, is used to produce the non-edible Jatropha oil for making candles and soap, and as a feedstock for the production of biodiesel. The cakes remaining after the oil is pressed can be used as feed in digesters and gasifiers to produce biogas for cooking and in engines, or the cakes can be used for fertilizing, and sometimes even as animal fodder. (more…)

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Palawan is now listed as a high-end adventure travel destination

palawan backpackers destinationPalawan has recently landed as one of the destination offerings of Mountain Travel Sobek and Wilderness Travel, two leading international tour operators that cater to discriminating, high-end adventure seekers. Kayaking and snorkeling in the Calamian Archipelago and equally stunning vistas in neighboring islands now stand alongside African safaris, Mt. Everest treks and other highly specialized tours to exotic destinations.
“The islands of Palawan have always been a favorite among diving enthusiasts and those looking for the perfect island getaway. Being on the list of these tour operators means that the industry can meet the expectations of more discerning travelers. We have what it takes to be in the map of top quality adventure destinations,” said Tourism Secretary Joseph Ace Durano in a statement. (more…)

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