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Philippine eagle ‘lives’

Calbido, the Philippine eagle that died last week, will continue to soar.

The rare bird (Pithecophaga jefferyi) will be mounted and taken on a nationwide school tour as an educational aid for schoolchildren, said an official of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

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DENR-Protected Areas and Wildlife Areas Bureau Director Mundita Lim said a taxidermist would prepare Calbido for mounting after the necropsy that was conducted on Tuesday.

Thus, even in death Calbido would still be helping to raise awareness of rare animal species and wildlife conservation, said Lim in an interview.

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“He will be used in information campaigns. Even if he’s dead, we can still use him,” she said.

Close to extinction

The Philippine eagle is endemic to the country but is close to extinction. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature has identified it as a critically endangered species.

Calbido died from systematic aspergillosis, a fungal infection that affected his internal organs, the necropsy showed. When veterinarians opened him up, they found the infection had severely damaged his intestines.

The stress of confinement also aggravated his fragile condition, Lim said.

“His wound was deeper than we initially thought. When he was rescued, the wound was already getting bigger,” she said.

Calbido was found on the ground with a chest wound on June 23 by officials of the mountain village of Buluan, Calbido, Samar.

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It had been 105 years since a Philippine eagle was seen in Samar. That was in 1896, the same year the species was identified.

It was estimated that Calbido was not quite three years old when he suddenly keeled over in his cage at the DENR regional office last Friday.

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TAGS: Calbido, DENR-Protected Areas and Wildlife Areas Bureau Director Mundita Lim, International Union for the Conservation of Nature, Philippine Eagle, Pithecophaga jefferyi, taxidermist
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