New Study Brings Hope for the Philippine Pangolin

Gregg Yan

A recent Mongabay article points to new hope for the Philippine pangolin, a species of pangolin so rare that conservationists cannot properly estimate its remaining population size. They are found only on the island province of Palawan in the Philippines, and like all pangolins, the Philippine pangolin has been the victim of poaching, causing it to be listed as Critically Endangered.

But a new study suggests that the Philippine pangolin may not be in as severe of a situation as some of its cousins in China and Vietnam. The study heavily relies on insights from local communities, who still see the Philippine pangolin from time to time and have noted that its distribution across its range is quite high. Local ecological knowledge greatly informs conservationists who are studying the Philippine pangolin, and allows them to gather data across wider areas. Over the 6 month study, 87% of local respondents said that, while sightings were still rare, they indeed had seen or could provide information about the Philippine pangolin. This indicates that there are enough of them still in the area to warrant increased conservation initiatives that can have significant results.

Read more about this optimistic study here.

A rare photo of a Philippine pangolin and its pup.

Gregg Yan