Community-Based Conservation of the Philippine Cockatoo and its Habitats (Philippine Cockatoo Conservation Programme; PCCP)

Timeframe: 2020 – 2021
Country/Region: Palawan Province, Philippines
Partner: Katala Foundation, Inc. (KFI)

The Philippine Cockatoo is a critically endangered species of cockatoo that is endemic to the Philippines. This species has suffered an extremely rapid population decline mainly due to poaching and extensive loss of its lowland habitats in the late 1980s. Since 1998, our project partner, the Katala Foundation has undertaken conservation work to safeguard this species. Since work began, four reserves have been established on the Philippine islands of Palawan, and these have seen the recovery of cockatoo populations. These efforts need to be continued to better protect the species and its habitats.

The programme aims to achieve a stepwise down-listing of the Philippine Cockatoo that is currently listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List. Methods that have in the past twenty years resulted in marked recovery of populations of this species in four project sites within Palawan, Philippines will be continued and refined. If current levels of protection in the project sites can be maintained, down-listing could be achieved by 2024. A key strategy is the inclusion of former poachers as wildlife wardens for nest protection and monitoring, which not only immediately removes poaching as a major threat factor, but at the same time provides a wealth of traditional knowledge for the protection of the species.

Other important strategies to effect recovery of the species and to aid in the monitoring and evaluation of the conservation efforts include applied research and population monitoring, protected area establishment and management, habitat restoration, rescue and captive management, translocation of suitable birds within the historical range of the species, capacity building, conservation education, and advocacy.