About this Project

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The Visayan Islands is home to numerous threatened endemic wildlife holding on for survival from  threats of deforestation, habitat fragmentation and hunting.


The Talarak Foundation Inc. (TFI) in the Philippines is unifying conservation efforts to protect natural habitats and restore animal populations in the wild. They embarked on the first structured reintroduction of the “West Visayan Big Five”, focusing their efforts on five key endemic Visayan species. They are the Visayan Warty Pig, Negros Bleeding-heart, Philippine Spotted Deer, Visayan Hornbill and Rufous-headed Hornbill.

Setting the stage for conservation efforts

The journey started in 2019 with the West Visayan Conservation Workshop. Hosted by TFI, the workshop brought together various stakeholders including Mandai Nature to develop a multi-species conservation strategy by identifying the conservation needs and recommended conservation approach for the five key species. Since then, Mandai Nature has supported TFI in carrying out actions identified in the plan which includes in situ assessment through surveys, habitat viability, threat assessments, community involvement and capacity building via outreach efforts. 

Surveys were conducted across the Bayawan Nature Reserve, Balinsasayao Twin Lakes Natural Park and Ayungon Tayason Municipal forest. In 2020, the first release of the Philippine Spotted Deer and Visayan Warty Pig into the Bayawan  Nature Reserve were  successfully carried out.

Securing a Future for the Negros Bleeding-heart

Negros Bleeding-heart

Conservation of the Negros Bleeding-heart received a boost from joint efforts by Mandai Nature, Jurong Bird Park and Talarak Foundation, with the establishment of a conservation breeding programme for the birds in Singapore. The programme is the first of its kind outside the Philippines and aims for progenies bred in Jurong Bird Park to be returned to Negros for eventual release to the wild. Since the arrival of the birds to Singapore in September 2021, the park has welcomed a number of chicks. 

In the Philippines, the TFI conservation team continues with reintroduction and post-reintroduction monitoring efforts for its focal species. TFI has also been active in habitat restoration efforts, including the removal of invasive agricultural crops and replacing them with over 20,000 saplings of various native trees. The team has also kept up outreach efforts, regularly engaging with community leaders, small business owners, farmers and residents to understand their perceptions on ongoing conservation work. TFI is also working closely with schools, educating students in Negros Island on wildlife biology, conducting presentations and demonstrations, and providing advice on topics revolving around local wildlife research.

Talarak Foundation Inc (TFI)

Talarak Foundation is a conservation NGO dedicated to the preservation and restoration of endemic wildlife of the West Visayan Islands.

 The Conservation Breeding Center Talarak was established in 2009 by Fernando L. Gutierrez, a nature lover and conservationist. The Center is located at Negros Forest Park on Negros Island.