Aims and
How you 
can help
Philippine Initiative for Conservation of Environment and the People, Inc.
Our nest guarding project
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Summary description

To cope with nest poaching in endangered bird species such as Philippine hornbills, guards and community conservationists are being hired.

Climbing to nest box
Aceros waldeni by Tim Laman
Nest hole control
Aceros waldeni at nest. Photo: Tim Laman

The larger endemic bird species’ last refuges are the forest remnants of Panay. Aside from illegal logging (see above) they are threatened by hunting for fun, for the pot and by nest poaching resulting in the sale of the nestlings on pet markets. For example, the hornbills of Negros and Panay, i. e. the Dulungan (= Writhed-billed Hornbill) and the Visayan Tarictic, are fell victim to all of these threats; nest poaching afflicted half of all Dulungan broods a few years ago. Nest guarding was installed at both the community level with incentives paid to the whole of the community and the individual poacher-turned-nest guard level. Scrutinizing the markets aimed at drying out the pet trade with hornbills and other birds. 

See also our PanayCon page about the importance of seed dispersers and hornbill protection

Hornbill as seed disperser
Hornbills are important seed dispersers particularly for trees with large fruits.

Main activities/outputs to achieve objective(s):
It was only after PanayCon`s (former PESCP´s) implementation of a rigorous nest protection scheme that the rate of nest plunder went below 5%, and an ever increasing number of active Dulungan nests was found and protected. Market raids by project devotees and staff virtually dried out the bird market in NW and N Panay.

Average duration per project:
In a pre-breeding assessment all active nest holes are being located, in a post-breeding assessment the fledging success is monitored by specialists versed in detecting the slightest traces of climbing a nest tree and break open the hole before fledging of the young. With a stunning high of lately 502 Dulungan nest holes the man power available has almost reached a ceiling unless more funds can be raised for protecting the remaining 200 or so nest holes.

Average cost per project:
To cope with nest poaching nest guards and Community Conservationists are being hired with a monthly remuneration of 20 US$/month and a nest incentive of 16 US$ per saved nest.

In our page  How you can help  you can find information how to support such projects, and you can download a list of projects in PDF format.


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Philippine Initiative for Conservation of Environment and the People
Last amendment: 20 October 2011