Endangered Tamaraws in Mindoro Died in the Hands of Poachers

Poachers Killed Critically Endangered Tamaraws in Mindoro

Endangered Subadult tamaraws (Bubalus mindorensis) was slaughtered by poachers in Occidental Mindoro province, during the coronavirus lockdown.

This coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has seen a surge in poaching and wildlife trade. In Occidental Mindoro Province, the second Tamaraw was killed by poachers.

Endangered Tamaraws
Image Source: Daily Guardian

According to the report of Daily Guardian, three poachers were spotted drying the meat of tamaraw near the base of McGowen inside the Mounts Iglit-Baco Natural Park before lunch on 28 August.

Two poachers were quickly surrounded and caught by park rangers and wardens while a third escaped. Two homemade shotguns or “pugakang” were confiscated, as well as a sack of tamaraw meat, to be dried and illegally sold as tapa or buffalo bush jerky.

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Endangered Tamaraws
Image Source: Daily Guardian

One of the poachers told the authorities they shot the tamaraw dead for “pangkain” (food) and some are for trade. However, the two apprehended poachers ran off and escaped into the jungle after three hours in their custody.

Neil del Mundo, the coordinator of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources’ Tamaraw Conservation Program (TCP), said: “Poachers might be using the COVID-19 lockdown as an opportunity to illegally enter our country’s protected areas and hunt animals.”

Rest assured that our rangers won’t stand for this. We’ll see to it that these poachers are prosecuted to the full extent of the law,” he added.

In April, a tamaraw was also killed by hunters. Environmental groups and individuals have raised funds for the wages 56 tamaraw rangers and wardens patrolling the park.

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