Biliran Governor Rogelio Espina is offering a reward for anyone who can help identify three men reported to have been shooting a critically endangered Visayan hornbill.
In a post on the Biliran Island’s official Facebook page, Espina said the reward would range from P5,000 to P20,000.
Julius Sabile was the one who posted the photos of the poachers and the Visayan hornbill over the weekend. It can be seen that the poachers were using a homemade gun in a forested area of Libtong village. According to a report by CNN Philippines, Sabile said the men did not listen to him when he told them not to shoot the bird.
The Visayan Hornbill is one of the identified critically endangered species in the country that is usually found in the islands of Panay, Negros, Masbate, Guimaras, and Ticao.
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources said capturing or killing the endangered bird could face a jail time of up to 12 years and payment of fine ranging from P100,000 to P1 million as mandated under Republic Act 9147 or the Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act.
The bird has also been listed as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species, witn only 1,200 mature individuals left.