Iloilo City News

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The Dinagyang is a religious and cultural festival in Iloilo City, Philippines held on the fourth Sunday of January, or right after the Sinulog In Cebu and the Ati-Atihan in Aklan.


APEC-NOC assures City hosting even without ICC

By Lydia C. Pendon

ILOILO CITY: The National Organizing Committee (NOC) of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) had assured the hosting of Iloilo City of two APEC Ministerial Meetings in September and October this year even if the construction of the Iloilo Convention Center (ICC), which will be the main venue, is not finished on time. Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog said that NOC head Ambassador Marciano Paynor personally went to see and evaluate other possible venues for the meetings should the ICC can’t be used. More than 2,000 delegates from 21 countries in Asia, the Pacific rim and the United States are expected to attend the meetings. Paynor reiterated the APEC official hosting of Iloilo City for the two meetings slated on September 21 to 25, 2015 for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) spearheaded by the Department of Trade and Industry; and the Food Security and Blue Economy on September 28 to October 6, 2015 spearheaded by the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

Search on for outstanding women of Iloilo City 2015


ILOILO CITY, Feb 27 (PNA) --The Iloilo City Government under its Gender and Development (GAD) Program, together with the Committee on Women and Family Relations and the city gender and development team, is launching the search for The Outstanding Women of Iloilo City (TOWIL) 2015.

The search is in celebration of March as the National Women’s Month.

The theme of the search is “Juana, ang desisyon mo importante sa buasdamlag sang kada isa, ikaw na” to give due recognition to the women who have manifested exemplary performance in their particular field of profession and have contributed to the development of Iloilo City.

“This is our way of honoring extraordinary Ilonggas who made a difference and created ripples of change in their chosen careers,” Mayor Jed Patrick E. Mabilog said.

The TOWIL award focuses on 14 categories that include Judicial Service; Persons with Disability; Protective and Security Services; Religious Services; Professional Services; Academe and Education Services; Volunteerism, Social and Community Services; Culture and Arts; Math, Science and Technology; Business, Corporation and Entrepreneurship; NGO/Civic Organization; Media, Public Information and Journalism; Government Services; and Philanthropic Works.

Deadline for submission of nominations is on or before March 6, while the deliberation and screening will be on March 9-13.

Announcement of winners will be done 10 days prior to the awarding ceremony slated on March 31 at Robinsons Place-Iloilo.

The criteria cover leadership skill at 20 percent; commitment, 20 percent; women empowerment, 30 percent and community and civic involvement, 30 percent.

The over-all chairperson of the Working Committee is Councilor Liezl Joy Zulueta-Salazar.

Nomination forms are available at the City Mayor’s Office c/o Norman Tabud, Office of City Councilor Salazar and the City Population Office; or download via Iloilo City Population Office Facebook account and

Iloilo City hosts international taekwondo tilt


ILOILO CITY, Feb. 26 (PNA) -- The Iloilo City government is hosting the Philippines’ staging of the 2015 Asia-Pacific Taekwondo Invitational Championships on Feb. 28-March 1 at SM City mall.

“Iloilo City marks a milestone in the Philippine sports history by being the first local government unit to host an international Taekwondo tournament in the country, outside Metro Manila,” stressed Mayor Jed Patrick E. Mabilog.

He said the global event boosts the city’s growing reputation as ideal sports tourism destination.

Vying for honors in the two-day event are seven participating countries including Philippines, Korea, United States of America, Guam, Japan, Mongolia, and Vietnam.

Mabilog and Philippine Taekwondo Association (PTA) Secretary General Monsour del Rosario signed a memorandum of agreement in cooperation with Philippine Sports Commission for the successful hosting of the sports spectacle in the metropolis this month.

“I would like to thank you Mayor Mabilog for initiating this event. I am happy that the mayor made sports a priority program of the city,” said del Rosario.

The staging of the prestigious event is sanctioned by the World Taekwondo Federation.

“The event is a good opportunity for our athletes to display their skills and widen their experience. It also provides the Philippines the chance to help promote friendship and camaraderie within the taekwondo family,” said PTA OIC Hong Sung Chon.

The competition is supported by SMART, SM and Milo.

Carrying the Philippine colors are:Male—Francis Aaron Agojo, Keith Benjamin Sembrano, Christian Al Dela Cruz, Lorenz Chavez, Jenar Torillos, Samuel Thomas Harper Morisson, Eddtone Bob Lumasac, Kristopher Robert Uy, Paul Romero, Enrique Edgardo Mora IV and Wasber Rasad.

Female—Irene Therese Bermejo, Levita Ronna Ilao, Darlene Mae Arpon, Camille Bonje, Kirstie Elaine Alora, Mary Ankelay Pelaez, Pauline Louise Lopez, Clouie Bolinas and Gabrielle Antoinette Yuchingtat.

The officials are Manuel Monsour Del Rosario III, head of team; Tem Igor Mella, head of team; Roberto Cruz, Ko Jun Ho, John Paul Lizardo, Dindo Simpao, coaches; Roland Campos, Jesus Morales III, Ricardo Santiago Jr., Mario Frigillana, Jaime Robianes, Jose Florante Santiago and Pauline Gina Guillermo.

Iloilo to host Asean anti-smoking workshop


THE 3rd Asean Anti-Smoking Workshop will be held in Iloilo City May 15-18 in recognition of the city's efforts to fight tobacco use.

Taking part in the workshop are more than 300 delegates from different cities in the Asean.

The choice of Iloilo for the workshop was announced last week, when Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog led the city delegation in receiving the Red Orchid Hall of Fame award from the Department of Health.

The city is a consistent Red Orchid awardee for the last three years for its innovations and programs to achieve a smoke-free environment.

Mabilog was accompanied by Councilor Joshua Alim, chairman of the Iloilo City Anti-smoking Task Force (ICAST), and ICAST executive director Inigo Garingalao in receiving the award.

Iloilo's anti-smoking drive was boosted with the passage of Regulation Ordinance 258 requiring a business license and regulating the sale of tobacco products, and Regulation Ordinance 259, Series of 2014, regulating the sale of cigarettes and tobacco products to minors with stores to be located 100 meters from schools.

Amendments to the two ordinances are being prepared to include daycare centers in the campaign against smoking.

Mabilog is also considering including all City Hall employees in no-smoking effort and hiring only non-smokers for municipal positions.

IPHO to parents: Keep your children active this summer


ILOILO CITY, Feb. 24 (PIA6) - - This early, parents are encouraged to have a plan to ensure that their schoolchildren are active and spend less time on their high-tech gadgets, playing computer and watching TV as the summer school break approaches.

Dr. Maria Socorro Colmenares-Quinon, Iloilo Provincial Health Officer I, urged parents to allot at least an hour of physical activity once a day for their children who will be having plenty of time at their homes during the summer vacation to prevent obesity or overweight.

“Children are now more fascinated with their gadgets and computers so parents must see to it that their children will have physical activities that may include biking, basketball, walking and other outdoor activities. They can also use the break as an opportunity to revive their children’s interests on our traditional street games such as sipa, piko, tumbang preso, patintero which they may have missed playing,” said Quinon.

She said obesity is greater among children who lack physical activity like those who spend most of their time on their couches, computers, watching TV and at the same time, eating junk foods.

Junk foods, according to Quinon, are another contributing factor for obesity among children. She advised parents to encourage their children to eat more vegetables and fruits and refrain from giving them junk foods.

“They could take advantage of our fruits that are in season which are abundant and cheap such as pineapple, watermelon, and mango, among others. These fruits are rich in Vitamin C which is protection for infection and upper respiratory tract infection, scabies and even sore eyes,” said Quinon.

However, she cautioned parents to wash watermelon thoroughly with water and soap before cutting to avoid chemical contamination.

The Nutritional Status of the DepEd Division of Iloilo for school year 2014 -2015 showed that out of the 280, 334 schoolchildren weighed in July 2014 around 4, 636 or 1.65% are overwieght and 1,207 or 0.37% are obese.

Quinon said obesity may lead to health problems such as diabetes, bone problems because of the heavy weight and also pediatric hypertension.

Iloilo to Xiamen direct flights up in 2016


ILOILO CITY, February 23 (PIA) --- Direct flight services from Iloilo to Xiamen, China will be launched via AirAsia Airlines by September 2016.

This was the special announcement of Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog during the Chinese New Year grand cultural show held Friday, Feb. 20 at the Iloilo Chinatown at Iznart Street here.

“AirAsia’s commitment is that starting next year, 2016, by September, they are going to launch the first Iloilo direct flights to Xiamen, China,” he announced.

He said that 80 percent of Chinese-Filipinos from Iloilo City are from Xiamen, China.

“Aside from that, AirAsia also committed to have direct flights from Iloilo to Incheon, South Korea by the last quarter of next year,” he said.

At present, the Iloilo International Airport caters to direct flights for two international destinations – Hong Kong and Singapore via Cebu Pacific Air.

There are three flights weekly for Hong Kong while two flights in a week are scheduled for Singapore.

City hall employs PWDs


ILOILO City – The city government is providing employment to persons with disabilities (PWDs).

Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog said 12 PWDs have been hired as job hires, describing them as very efficient with their assigned tasks.

“We provide equal opportunities to all. We would like to send a message to the public that PWDs are normal persons and they could work normal jobs like what any other persons can do,” he said.

The PWDs were hired together with several senior citizens but the Commission on Audit (COA) ruled that the latter are no longer eligible for employment because they are considered retired from service.

Mabilog encouraged other offices and establishments in the city to also provide employment to PWDs and other vulnerable groups.

If there are city hall job hires no longer interested to work, the city government may replace them with PWDs, said the mayor.

“They are very efficient and focused on their work,” added Mabilog.

DRR reports for Hyogo Framework up in OCD workshop


ILOILO CITY, Feb. 21 (PIA6) – The Office of Civil Defense (OCD) together with the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (RDRRMC) will organize a workshop on February 23 here to come up with reports for the country’s Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) on disaster risk reduction.

OCD Regional Director and RDRRMC chairperson Rosario T. Cabrera said the outputs of the one-day activity will include the Regional Progress Reports (Biennial 2013-2015) and the 10-Year Final Accomplishment Reports (2005-2015) on HFA strategic goals and priority actions.

The Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA): Building the Resilience of Nations and Communities to Disasters (2005-2015) is a ten-year roadmap that promotes strategic and systematic approach to reducing vulnerabilities and risks to hazards, which was adopted by 168 nations during the World Conference on DRR in 2005 and has reached its concluding phase.

As such, each UN-member nation is expected to submit its Country Progress Reports on HFA strategic goals and priority actions which were implemented and accomplished for the period 2013-2015 (biennial) and 2005-2015 (final).

Cabrera said Western Visayas can contribute to the HFA global reporting by highlighting substantial achievements and contributions towards making our communities more resilient to disasters, as well as identifying significant gaps and challenges.

With the HFA’s culmination comes a post-2015 DRR framework (HFA2) which is yet to be finalized and approved that will serve as the new guide on DRR initiatives from 2015 and beyond.

Among those who will participate in the workshop are RDRRMC member-agencies.

APEC delegates to get a glimpse of Iloilo’s best festivals


ILOILO CITY, Feb. 20 (PNA) -- Delegates to the two important ministerial meeting of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit to be hosted by Iloilo City will get a glimpse of this city’s best festivals - Dinagyang and Paraw Regatta.

Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog said that the winners of this year’s Dinagyang Festival and the Paraw’s Sinamba Mardigras competition will perform during a cultural show for the delegates.

Mabilog hinted of mounting a big stage in front of the Iloilo Freedom Grandstand for the showcase of Iloilo’s best of the best during the said cultural show.

Meantime, the mayor disclosed that the national organizing committee is slated to arrive in Iloilo on February 24 to check on the preparations of the city.

Also, provincial government first lady Cossette Defensor, city first lady Marivic Mabilog, and the wife of the city vice mayor Gina Espinosa have been on discussions as to the preparations and activities to welcome the wives of the ministers who will be arriving during the APEC.

The third floor of the Iloilo City Hall will also be dedicated to the APEC organizing committee.

Iloilo will host the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) ministerial meeting on September 21 to 25 and the High Level Policy Dialogue on Food Security and the Blue Economy and Related Meetings from September 28 to October 6.

New Year, Old Bond: Celebrating Chinese influence on Ilonggo life

(JSC/LTP-PIA6 Iloilo)

ILOILO CITY, Feb. 19 (PIA6) --- History tells us that the Chinese have long been part of the Ilonggos' way of life.

Historical and archaeological studies indicate that the Chinese have been trading in the Iloilo area perhaps since the Sung Dynasty (960-1279 A.D).

According to the late historian and writer Dr. Henry Funtecha, traditional Chinese influences have been embedded in Iloilo’s past and present.

By the time the Spaniards colonized the country, a good number of them had already settled in the town of Molo, now one of the districts of Iloilo City.

Molo served as the commercial port of Iloilo during this time when Chinese bartered silk, porcelain wares and damask with the natives while the latter engaged in trading products from their farms, the sea and the forests.

A number of Chinese also settled down in Molo and married Ilonggo women. The descendants of these Chinese could be found among families named Consing, Ditching, Conlu, Ganzon, Guanzon, Jocson, Lacson, Layson, Locsin, Sianson, Yulo, and Yusay.

After the First World War, the growth of Chinese families and consequent presence of school-age children, coupled with cultural pride and political organizations, prompted the building of Iloilo’s Chinese schools for elementary education.

The Chinese Commercial School began in 1911 or a trade school owned by the old Iloilo Confederation of Chinese businessmen. Sixty students enrolled.

This was followed by Sun Yat Sen School which was established through a group of nationalistic Cantonese and Fukienese supporters of the Kuomintang. The third school Chiang Kai Shek was built by the Ong Family Association due to a faction with the leadership of Sun Yat Sen.

The Chinese were also omnipresent in the sinamay or weaving industry which had flourished in Iloilo by the 19th century. The province had begun to develop the reputation as the center of the textile weaving industry in the country.

The introduction of a sugar cane variety called “sakara” was also among the legacies of the Chinese in Western Visayas. Subsequently, the Chinese also taught the natives how to extract sugar juice from the canes and to transform it into solid granules.

As to the sugar industry, it appears that almost all the important technology used in the process or preparation of muscovado sugar are of Chinese origin. The large vat where the sugar juice is cooked to form into “panocha” is “cawa”. To transfer boiling sugar from one “cawa” to another is called “yaya”. To clean the sap of impurities is “suiani”. “Cansaja” on the other hand is the term for the wilted leaf of the cane and “siapo” is the bagasse.

In terms of influencing the Ilonggo culinary palate, the Chinese also left a lasting legacy. Still prominent today are batchoy, bihon, hototai, kimlo, lumpia, pancit (including pancit molo), siomai, and siopao.

La Villa Rica de Arevalo, a particular district that was once part of the Parian (Molo), became famous in the region for its beautiful fireworks or pyrotechnics and was dubbed as the home of Iloilo’s firecrackers industry.

Other lasting early Chinese influences on Ilonggo life include the wearing of the “camisa de chino”, the wearing of slippers, the popular leisure game of “mahjong”, the observance of “feng shui”, among others.

The list would still go long proving how Chinese had made an indelible imprint in the history and culture of Iloilo. The celebration by the city of the Chinese New Year with the theme “United Iloilo on the Rise” is a reminder of the significant role the Chinese play and continue to play in the life of the Ilonggos.

Teen centers program vies for Galing Pook Award


ILOILO – The provincial government is joining the Galing Pook Award. It is fielding its teen centers program.

According to Provincial Population Office (PPO) chief Ramon Yee, his office will be submitting all the needed requirements next month.

“Hopefully, we can make it,” said Yee.

The teen centers program will be fielded under the “population management for the youth” category.

The Galing Pook Award recognizes excellent local government programs and projects.

Teen centers advocate values formation and responsible reproductive health. One of its objectives is to curb teenage pregnancy

To date, according to Yee, the provincial government already has 23 functioning teen centers in various municipalities.

This year, the program aims to cover all municipalities.

Yee said towns with large youth populations like Pototan, Banate, Barotac Viejo, and Oton, which already have teen centers, will have an additional one.

The provincial government has allocated P6.5 million for more teen centers this year.

New teen centers will be established in the following:

• Oton and Guimbal in the 1st District • Zarraga and Leganes in the 2nd District • Maasin in the 3rd District • Dumangas, Anilao and Banate in the 4th District; and • San Rafael, Concepcion, Carles, Ajuy, San Dionisio, Balasan, and Batad in the 5th District.

The PPO recently conducted a stakeholders’ consultative conference for the establishment of school-based multipurpose teen centers. It was attended by mayors and schools officials.

“The success or failure of the teen centers lies in the hands of the stakeholders,” said Yee.

Iloilo City bags Hall of Fame Award in anti-smoking initiative

By Lydia C. Pendon (Sunnex)

ILOILO City is now in the Hall of Fame as it bags another award from the Department of Health for the city’s anti-smoking initiatives.

Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog, Councilor Joshua Alim, who is the chairman of the Iloilo City Anti-Smoking Task Force (ICAST), and ICAST Executive Director Inigo Garingalao will receive the plaque of recognition in a ceremony at the SMX Convention Center in Metro Manila on Friday, February 20.

ICAST was organized in 2007 as a core group to lead in the anti-smoking program implemented in public places and buildings, parks and plazas, public and private vehicles, schools, restaurants and other areas congregated by many people.

Alim said the award recognizes the City Government’s innovations and initiatives against the use of tobacco and smoking in public.

Alim added that this is the third year that the city received recognition from the Health department as a livable and smoke-free city.

DOST, DA to install automated weather station for use of rice farmers

By Perla G. Lena [(PNA), CTB/AJP/PGL/VLO]

ILOILO CITY, Feb 16 (PNA) -- The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and the Department of Agriculture (DA) are now working closely for the installation of five automated weather stations (AWS) in Western Visayas.

DOST regional director, Engr. Rowen Gelonga, said that the AWS will be used by DA to monitor weather conditions and use the information for the benefit of farmers, especially rice farmers.

DOST will install the equipment. DA, on the other hand, has shelled out more than P2 million for the project, according to Gelonga.

One AWS will be installed in every province in the region, he added.

Gelonga added that while DA has eyed rice farmers as its users of information, yet the data gathered from the AWS will also be made available to the public through the Project Noah.

He added that the installation of the AWS is an ongoing project. The DA equipment will be part of the project to be implemented this year.

Fisheries, food security take center stage in Iloilo APEC gab

By NORMAN D. CORDON (Special Correspondent for Asean and APEC, PN)

MANILA — The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Ocean and Fisheries Working Group (OFWG) and Policy Partnership for Food Security (PPFS) will come together in Iloilo City this October for the High-Level Policy Dialogue on Food Security and Blue Economy.

According to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), one of the key deliverables is the APEC Food Security Action Plan – a long-term OFWG strategy for addressing food security aligned with the APEC food system and PPFS Roadmap.

DFA said the development of a blue economy in the APEC region is an important approach to attain sustainable development and utilization of marine resources and ecosystems, as well as achieve inclusive economic growth.

During the recently concluded First APEC Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM) and Related Meetings, the OFWG highlighted how fisheries and sustainable aquaculture are critical to ensuring food security, sustainable livelihoods, and economic prosperity worldwide.

A way to achieve food security in the coastal and marine environment is to combat illegal, unregulated and unreported (IUU) fishing, improve biodiversity of all support-ecosystems, and create well-maintained ecosystems that provide more ecological goods and better ecological services.

Also during the First APEC SOM held at the Clark and Subic Freeport Zones, initiatives on management of health threats and improvement of natural disaster risk reduction to support the APEC 2015 priority “Building Sustainable and Resilient Communities” were tackled.

DFA reported that at the Life Sciences Innovation Forum (LSIF) and the Health Working Group (HWG) meetings, APEC economies reaffirmed their commitment to strengthen health care systems as a step toward APEC’s goal of a healthy Asia-Pacific region by 2020.

The APEC LSIF and HWG agenda directly feed into the APEC 2015 theme of inclusive growth through the development and promotion of innovative healthcare systems and products.

For 2015, LSIF and HWG will concentrate on the following areas: universal healthcare coverage, prevention and control of non-communicable diseases, health financing, food safety, and preparedness for effective management of infectious diseases and health pandemics.

On the other hand, during the meeting of the APEC Emergency Preparedness Group (EPWG), APEC member-economies shared experiences and best practices on four thematic areas of disaster management — prevention and mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery and rehabilitation.

The meeting also highlighted the importance of research and science and technology in reducing damage during disasters and the significance of business continuity in ensuring livelihood and trade flow.

City readies Chinese New Year celebration


ILOILO City, the first to celebrate the Chinese New Year in Western Visayas, is gearing up for the sixth-year celebration in the year of the Wooden Goat.

The celebration is spearheaded by the Iloilo Chinese Chamber of Commerce under president Francis Sio and implemented by the Sun Yet Sen High School.

Sio is currently the chairman of the Iloilo Chinese Cultural Association, and the New Year celebration is coordinated by four Fil-Chinese schools and three Chinese organizations in the city.

The grand cultural show will be started by a grand cultural parade on Friday, February 20, from the Bonifacio Drive up to the Chinese Chinatown at Iznart Street for the cultural show and pyrotechnics and fireworks display.

Sio said this year’s celebration has a theme “United Iloilo Rise to Excellence” to feature the shared heritage of the Chinese people and the Ilonggos through a photo exhibit courtesy of Bahay Tsinoy, Kaisa Heritage Center and the cultural association.

Invited to the Iloilo celebration are perennial visitors Teresita Ang See, Chinese Consul in Cebu and officials of the Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Manila.

Sio said that hopefully, this year’s celebration will exhibit the biggest lion and dragon dance parade participated by the local Fil-Chinese schools in Iloilo City.

Childbirth now covered by PhilHealth


ILOILO CITY, February 12 (PIA) --- All women about to give birth are now covered with social health insurance and benefits under the National Health Insurance Program (NHIP), said PhilHealth-6.

Lourdes Diocson, PhilHealth-6 Regional Vice President, said all women about to give birth shall be covered by the NHIP to enable all mothers and their newborns to have financial access to essential health services.

“We want to ensure that all women about to give birth are provided with financial risk protection during their pregnancy, delivery, and post-partum period,” she said.

She explained that these pregnant women upon consultation or even during their deliveries found to be not enrolled with PhilHealth or with lacking contributions are still eligible for PhilHealth benefits.

PhilHealth policy on benefit availment requires payment of three (3) months within six (6) months prior to the first day of confinement, wherein the month of confinement is included in the six qualifying months.

However, in the case of pregnant women who lack the qualifying contribution, payment of the missed quarter will be required plus the remaining quarter of the year to be entitled of PhilHealth benefits.

For non-PhilHealth members who are confined, they will be referred to the medical social worker for assessment to Point-of-Care enrolment as hospital sponsor or under the Informal Economy Program of PhilHealth wherein payment of premium contributions equivalent to one year will be required prior discharge.

According to PhilHealth-6, Maternity Care Package will be to these pregnant women which include prenatal, delivery and postpartum care at P8,000 or Normal Spontaneous Delivery (NSD) Package at P6,500; Antenal Care Package at P1,500, and P19,000 for Caesarean Section.

Additional package for the newly-born babies at P1,750 is also provided.

Diocson said that Philhealth now pays the 5th and subsequent deliveries of women.

“Before, only the first four births were covered by PhilHealth but this time, we will pay the maternity benefit regardless of the number of previous deliveries,” she said.

This development is in line with the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) which is to reduce the risk of stillbirth and maternal deaths during pregnancy.

Little egrets top list of migratory birds in Western Visayas


ILOILO CITY, Feb 10 (PNA) -- The white-winged creatures that we usually see on the fields called Little egrets (Egretta garzetta) top this year’s list of Asian Waterbird Census 2015 that was conducted throughout Western Visayas in January 2015.

In its regional census report, the Protected Area Management and Biodiversity Conservation Section (PAMBCS) under the Technical Service of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Region 6 disclosed that Little egrets numbered to 3,310.

It was followed by Black-winged stilt (Himantopus himantopus) with 2,430; Cattle egret (Bubulcus ibis) with 1,462; and Common tern (Sterna hirundo) with 885. The number is yet to change when reports coming from DENR field offices in Negros Occidental and Guimaras are consolidated with that of the regional report.

The annual Asian Waterbird Census is conducted throughout the region to monitor the presence of waterbirds or migratory birds.

“They usually inhabit the wetlands and have impact not just ecologically but economically as well. The presence of waterbirds in wetland areas is an indicator that the ecosystems of that certain wetlands is still in good condition,” said PAMBCS Chief Dennis Piñosa.

In the region, the DENR-PAMBCS has identified 24 bird counting sites.

In Iloilo City and Iloilo Province, the sites are Brgy. Airport, Mandurriao; Brgy. Sooc, Arevalo, and Brgy. Hinaktakan, Lapaz, all in Iloilo City; Brgy. Nabitasan, Leganes, Iloilo; Brgy. Tubigan, Zarraga, Iloilo; Brgy. Pulao, Pabrica-Ermita, Dumangas, Iloilo; Brgy. Tinuri-an, Btac. Nuevo, Iloilo; Brgy. Plandico, Concepcion; Brgy. Pantalan-Nabaye, Ajuy, Iloilo; Brgy. Tuble, San Dionisio, Iloilo; Brgy. Padios, Sara, Iloilo.

In Antique there are five sites, namely: Brgy. Supa, San Jose; Brgy. Cubay-Napultan, Sibalom; Brgy. Lapaz, Hamtic; Brgy. Ilaures, Bugasong; and Brgy. Lipata, Culasi. In Aklan, there are three sites, namely: Brgy. New Buswang, Kalibo; Brgy. Lawa-an, New Washington; and Brgy. Lalab, Batan. In Capiz, there are four sites, namely: Brgy. Balijuagan, Roxas City; Brgy. Cudian, Ivisan; Brgy. Agustin Navarra, Ivisan; Brgy. Intongcan, Pontevedra; and Brgy. Dulangan, Pilar.

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