Rasa Island Bird Sanctuary in Palawan

Rasa Island NarraOne of the prime eco-tourism destinations in the province of Palawan is Rasa Island. It is considered as a bird sanctuary, but of outmost importance – it is home to the dense population of the already critically endangered Philippine Cockatoo (Cacatua haematuropygia). The only large population of Philippine Cockatoo left that can be found in a single area – reaching as high as 70 individuals or heads. Aside from the Philippine Cockatoo that resides in the island, it also shares residence with the other endemic Palawan wildlife such as black-nape oriole, white-vented shama, racquet-tailed parrot, and rufous-tailed tailorbird.

The Local Government Unit of Narra is exerting efforts to Safeguard and Protect Rasa Island. Stiffer penalties, ordinances and resolutions were passed to discourage would be poachers and gatherers of Local Wildlife to the island. But major credit goes to the establishment of a project – the Philippine Cockatoo Conservation Program in 1999. The program organized and conducted a consultative meeting and planning workshop with stake-holders like poachers, claimants of lots on Rasa, residents of nearby fishing villages, representatives of the Local Government Units and relevant agencies. From the initial meeting workshop – goals and expectations were set. All of these , for the good and benefit of the Philippine Cockatoo, as well as the other local endemic wildlife in the island, to ensure their protection and survival.

Rasa Island is on the east coast of Narra, a southern municipality of the province. A 30 minute boat ride from the pier of Panacan will bring the visitor to the island. Narra is 91 kilometers away from Puerto Princesa City with an estimated travel time of 2.5 hours.

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