The Philippines currently only has six Ramsar sites and yet other wetlands support many endemic and migratory species that are under threat of extinction. Further Philippine wetland sites may meet the Ramsar criteria, which may provide better protection for threatened species.
With no published demographic information, the basic ecological requirements of the threatened endemic Philippine Duck is poorly understood. It is protected throughout the Philippines and yet is hunted and as a consequence the population may be in steep decline.
The aim of the project is to conduct surveys at wetland sites to estimate distribution, abundance and habitat requirements of the Philippine Duck and other wetland birds. We will conduct interviews to determine hunting pressure.
The main objectives of the project are:-
1) Conduct research in a biodiversity hotspot with limited knowledge;
2) Provide lots of new scientific information which will be communicated through papers, blogs and social media;
3) Train filipino students and research assistants;
4) Provide basic ecological information on the Philippine Duck and other wetland bird species;
5) Gather evidence to support better protection of the wetland habitats;
6) Increase community awareness of the threatened wetland bird species.
We have secured a sponsored master’s place for Kevin Carlo Artiaga working with Dr Carmela Española at the University of the Philippines. Carlo started his field work in August 2015. Other project partners are:-
Beth Roberts (PhD student) http://www.sste.mmu.ac.uk/users/smarsden/research/BethRoberts.html
Professor Stuart Marsden (Manchester Metropolitan University) http://stuartmarsden.blogspot.co.uk/
Dr Matthew Geary (University of Chester) http://mattgeary.github.io/cv.html.