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Protection Of Herons Fly High

By Edson C. Tandoc Jr.
(reproduced with permission from inq7.net)
Date: August 16, 2004
Page A23

PROTECTION starts with education.  
Streamers now fly near Villa Encarnacion in Barangay Malanday, Valenzuela City, warning residents not to harm black-crowned night herons thriving nearby.

The signs were put up by barangay officials and  by local politicians.

One poster, citing the Wildlife Act of the Philippines, warns residents they could be fined up to P20,000 and imprisoned up to six years should they harm the birds.

Ordinance proposed
Two city councilors are proposing an ordinance to protect the herons and other migratory birds in several areas in the city, but it will take a month before the proposal is approved.

Herons
.Herons

Under the proposal, persons who would be caught catching or harming the birds would have to pay up to P5,000 in fines and plant 10 trees.

Village president Lorenzo Bogayan told the Inquirer they had been looking after the herons near their houses since they first saw the birds in 2000.

No longer helpless
But then they did not have the power to hold accountable those who caught or killed the birds.

Now, the villagers are happy that people are learning to appreciate the herons through the media and through government attention, Bogayan said.

The rescue on Tuesday of a wounded heron brought attention to the plight of hundreds of herons and other migratory birds which have been thriving in parts of the city. The rescued heron, named Olan, is under treatment.