The Tamaraw (Bubalus mindorensis) is endemic to the island of Mindoro and the only wild cattle species of the Philippines archipelago. Originally widespread across the island, it is now restricted to few isolated places with probably no more than 440 animals remaining today. Mts Iglit-Baco National Park in the center of the Island is considered to shelter the only viable population, while other subpopulations appear to be in extinction vortices.
Since 2012 the D’ABOVILLE Foundation, in collaboration with international partners and local stakeholders, is developing a socio-environmental program on the Island of Mindoro in order to address the critical situation of this emblematic species and its habitat. On that purpose, the program develops two strategic approaches:
(1) Direct action to support and improve the protection of the species on Mindoro and fight illegal activities. This includes: verification survey to locate new groups, monitoring of small remote tamaraw groups, capacity building of local staff for anti-poaching patrols, law enforcement forum…
(2) General landscape approach within Mts Iglit-Baco National Park in cooperation with the Park’s management and residing indigenous communities. This challenging part aims at (i) improve governance and management system of the protected area, (ii) design and implement a proper zoning system and traditional hunting management model where tamaraw is present and (iii) initiate innovative land-use system among local indigenous communities to enhance resource productivity and resilience of the environment.