Management planning for Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, Philippines

Project Leader(s): Aldrin Mallari and Philip McGowan
Staff: Drs Stuart Marsden and David Lee (Manchester Metropolitan University), Nigel Collar (Birdlife International) and Roger Wilkinson (Chester Zoo).
Sponsors: Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund, Rufford Small Grant, Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund
Partners: Manchester Metropolitan University, Chester Zoo and BirdLife International

Many protected areas are designated because of the biodiversity that they contain, such as particular species or habitats. However, management planning for these areas is often based on practical considerations and logistics rather than the needs of the biodiversity that is often of global significance. We have been working with the Protected Areas Management Board of Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park on the island of Palawan in the Philippines to ensure that its new management plan takes into account the needs of several globally threatened species and the habitat that they depend on. 

The project has sought to ensure that the Park contributes fully to its conservation objectives (it is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site) by determining the ecological and anthropogenic factors that affect the distribution and abundance of key understorey bird species in Palawan. We then seek to use these data to develop decision-making models and practical tools for protected area management. The final stage is to work with the Protected Areas Management Board to prepare the new management plan that will guide their work, and the allocation of resources, for the next few years.

Mallari, N.A.D., Collar, N.J., Lee, D.C. McGowan, P.J.K., Wilkinson, R. and Marsden, S.J. (in press) Population densities of understorey birds across a habitat gradient in Palawan, Philippines: implications for conservation. Oryx.  



Dr Philip McGowan
Senior Lecturer in Biodiversity and Conservation