Dumaguete City will host the seventh run of the Philippine Bird Festival, the country's top avian conservation and eco-tourism event, from September 23 to 24.
Foreign exhibitors from bird watching societies in Asian countries such as Taipei, Thailand, Malaysia, Japan and Singapore will showcase the birds from their countries while local participants from non-government organizations (NGOs) working for wildlife conservation will present their avian conservation efforts.
A Bird Quest quiz show and bird-watching tours will also be conducted for children.
During a pre-launching event held August 1, at the Robinsons Place Atrium, Dumaguete City, it was revealed that Silliman University's Center for Tropical Conservation Studies (CENTROP) is waiving its entrance fees for public school children this week to mark the festival's pre-launching and the duration of said festival in September.
The two-day festival will also be highlighted by a series of bird-watching lectures and a conservation forum to discuss the status of conservation measures of the Negros bleeding-heart and other birds found in Negros Island.
The Negros bleeding-heart is a critically-endangered bird endemic to the Philippines and can only be found in the islands of Negros and Panay.
The festival is conducted annually by the Wild Bird Club of the Philippines (WBCP) around the country to bring attention to local efforts in conserving birds and their habitat.
“This is a celebration of localities in their care and interest in protecting the environment. We choose places that have been doing something for bird habitats,” said WBCP pesident Anna Maria Gonzales during the pre-launching forum.
This year, the club partnered with Silliman University and the local governments of Dumaguete and Negros Oriental for the bird festival to be held in Dumaguete.
“This is our way of acknowledging the conservation work that has already been done in Dumaguete and Negros Oriental and to hold the province as an example for the rest of the country,” said Gonzales.
Before coming to Dumaguete, the WBCP has staged the festival in Olango Island in Cebu, Puerto Princes, Balanga City in Luzon, Quezon City and Davao City where the first Asian Bird Fair was also launched. (Rachelle Nessia/PIA Negros Oriental)