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Philippine Eagle: Animal keeper takes to TikTok to spread awareness about PH’s ‘bird of prey’

Philippine Eagle, and ambassador of his species, Sinag with his keeper, Lohwana Halaq, as they share friendly glances inside the premises of Philippine Eagle Center in Davao City. | Lohwana Halaq/ IG

Philippine Eagle, and ambassador of his species, Sinag, with his keeper, Lohwana Halaq, as they share friendly glances inside the premises of PEC in Davao City. | Lohwana Halaq/ IG

CEBU CITY, PHILIPPINES— How can someone help in in spreading awareness about an endangered species, particularly the country’s national bird, the Philippine Eagle?

Lohwana Halaq, a Philippine Eagle Center (PEC) animal keeper, did this by sharing her stand on spreading information about the risk of extinction of these rare giant birds of prey through a social media site, TikTok.

Halaq said this was her way to inform people about the existence of Sinag, one of the few endangered Philippine Eagles being taken care of in the center.

READ: Philippine Eagle Week: Unabated forest destruction killing national bird

PEC in Davao

According to the Philippine Eagle Foundation in its website, the PEC, which is located in Davao City, is home to 36 of these eagles and 18 of them are captive bred.

In the video, Halaq explained how most of the times, Filipinos often would not exert enough effort to find out about the Philippine Eagle, not until they would visit the rehabilitation center for the eagle themselves.

“Many of them comment: ‘I did not know (that) we had this eagle in the Philippines…’ my response usually is ‘did you even open your Filipino passport?,” she said. 

An illustration of the eagle is in one of the pages of the Filipino passport.

READ: PH eagle tracked in study shot, wounded by poachers

Sinag and other PH Eagles

As for Sinag and the rest of the Philippine Eagles at the center, they are among the rarest “birds of prey” in the world.

According to Philippine Eagle Foundation in a recent Inquirer report, the International Union for Conservation of Nature has listed the Philippine Eagle as critically endangered with only an estimated 400 pairs left in the wild.

The Philippine Eagle stands at 3 feet from the crown on its head to its tail. And it also has a 7-feet wing span.

“It is clear that awareness plays a crucial role in species conservation from local to international recognitions. Education is key,” Halaq wrote in her post.

READ: Eagles in captive breeding in Davao to have new sanctuary


Halaq uses her TikTok account as an avenue for citizens, especially Filipinos, in gaining more knowledge about the critically endangered animals. 

On the other hand, Sinag and the other eagles are currently housed inside the premises of PEC in Davao City, which is the only breeding facility in the world to successfully reproduce, take care and release these kind of eagles back into their territory, the wild.


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TAGS: Philippine Eagle, Philippine Eagle Center, Sinag
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