Man Who Shot and Ate a Rare Philippine Eagle Gets Away With a Tiny Fine

by , 05/28/12
filed under: Conservation, Environment, News

philippine eagle, conservation, endangered species, wildlife law, green design, sustainable design, eco-design, news, Philippines, endangered species, wildlife, conservation

Environmentalists in the Philippines are outraged after a man who shot and ate a rare Philippine Eagle was fined a mere $2,300. There are no more than 250 adult Philippine Eagles alive in the wild, which further convinces local conservationists that the punishment is far too lenient and fails to match the severity of the crime.

philippine eagle, conservation, endangered species, wildlife law, conservation controversy, philippine eagle case

In contravention of the country’s 2001 wildlife law, the 26 year old farmer Bryan Balaon received a fine of 100,000 pesos for shooting the endangered Philippine Eagle – the country’s national bird – in 2008. It was expected that he would receive a harsher punishment as killing an endangered species often results in a jail sentence as well as a fine. Instead, environmentalists describe his meager punishment as nothing more than a “slap on the wrist.”

Speaking to news agency Agence-France Presse, Dennis Salvador, president of the conservation group Philippine Eagle Foundation said that an opportunity had been lost “to send an important message against poachers.” “We find the fine pathetic,” Salvador raged.

Balaon’s crime was not just one against the species, but also one of stupidity. That particular eagle had been reintroduced to the wild in 2006 and had been fitted with a tracking device. As such, officials were able to find the bird’s remains after Balaon had shot it with an air gun and eaten it with friends. Even though it was fitted with a tracker, Balaon claimed that he had not known the bird was endangered and even said he planned to appeal against the verdict in a higher court.

+ Philippine Eagle Foundation

via BBC News

Images: Philippine Eagle, Shutterstock, Wikimedia Commons

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  1. SpecialEFX March 28, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Instead of the fine he might have benefited from some education and community service with the Philippine Eagle Foundation or another conservation group.

  2. samagon May 29, 2012 at 10:26 am

    um, considering the economy of the Philippines, I mean you can get a live in maid for $20 a month, I’m not sure how much a farmer makes, but it can’t be that much, he’ll have to sell his farm, and then he probably still won’t have enough to pay for this fine.

  3. Green Joy May 29, 2012 at 5:14 am

    I’m a Filipino (Philippine citizen, for those unaware 😉 ) and I’m outraged at this. I can’t see how this can be excused, his plea of ignorance is just ridiculous. An airgun has a relatively short range, so he would have seen it was an eagle. Eagles aren’t exactly a common sight here in the PI, so what goes through his head? That might make a nice meal or maybe the perfect beer-match.

    Juan Miguel Ruiz

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