Wildlife conservation effort of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Region 10 (DENR 10) gets a boost with the successful captive breeding of a Mindanao Bleeding Heart Pigeon (Gallicolomba crinigera) on December 27, 2022 in Barangay Cugman, Cagayan de Oro City.
A vulnerable species and endemic to the Philippines, the Mindanao Bleeding Heart Pigeon (MBHP) with its parents is being cared for by Dr. Miguel David L. De Leon, a conservationist and Director of Return Flights Raptor Facility (RFRF) and Robert S. Kennedy Bird Conservancy.
He reported the significant endeavor to DENR 10 Regional Executive Director Henry A. Adornado who sent a team to monitor and document the accomplishment.
RED Adornado is thankful to Dr. De Leon for the partnership on wildlife conservation. He congratulates him for his initiatives in rehabilitating the two adult MBHP and the birth of a chick at the RFRF Holding and Captive Breeding Facility located near DENR’s Malasag Reforestation Project in Barangay Cugman.
A Memorandum of Agreement was signed by the then Regional Executive Director, now Assistant Secretary for Field Operations – Eastern Mindanao, Ruth M. Tawantawan and Dr. De Leon on the Philippine Raptors Conservation Program way back July 1, 2014. He is authorized by DENR 10 to take temporary custody and care of injured wildlife, particularly raptors, from the Regional Wildlife Rescue Center. He also extends medical assistance in rehabilitating injured raptors before releasing them back to their natural habitat and assist the DENR 10 in the release of rehabilitated raptors.
Dr. De Leon said the two MBHP of unknown gender at the RFRF were turned over by trappers four years ago. They were treated for noose injuries on the legs and upon recovery, they were placed in a large enclosure mimicking its natural habitat. The MBHP feeds on the forest floor and is caught in noose traps set out for various species of Rail (tikling) and Red Jungle Fowl, he added.
He further disclosed that last November 2022, the pair built a nest in the DENR- accredited facility and on December 27, 2022 hatched an egg.
Dr. Miguel David L. de Leon is an eye surgeon and field biologist from Cagayan de Oro City. In 2020 he discovered and presented a new orchid species, Aerides upcmae which was named after his alma mater, the UP College of Medicine. (Report courtesy of Dr. Miguel David L. De Leon) RSCIG No. 01-006-2023