Nestled in the lush, rangy trees and faunas at the foot of Mt. Apo. The Philippine Eagle Center (PEC) is the home of the world’s biggest eagle, the Philippine Monkey-eating Eagle at Malagos, Davao.
Waking up on the second day of my sojourn trip in Davao, after that dreamy island hopping in Samal , I am excited for the next day. “When in Davao never miss to visit PEC” says my travel companion, who is a frequent visitor of Davao, Patrick as he leads the way. After an hour of road trip, we have reached the Davao Water District. While walking going to the center, our attention was caught with the lumad women or Native women in selling perky souvenir items. Delighted with their colorful costumes and warm smiles, I brought a dozen of their products for my friends back in Cebu.
Smiling attending staff greeted us with warm welcome, off to a good start. The PEC visitors lounge resembles a huge tent built-in the middle of the juggle. It has a souvenir shop, canteen and cashier concessionaires.
Ambling around Philippine Eagle Center
Feeling exuberant in every step, I can’t help but feeling giddy to the thought that I can now see the “Haribon” or Haring Ibon as locally called or simply the Philippine Monkey-eating Eagle scientifically known as Pithecophaga jefferyi. The Philippine Eagle has been an iconic symbol of Davao and the Philippine as its National bird.
Ambling around the PEC ourselves free of tour guide is awesome. We are dwarfed by the lofty and towering trees. Exploring around, you can see different trails that leads you to other features of the center. Strolling around, I figured out that there are other endemic and endangered Philippine animals in the center.
To name some : Golden-crowned flying fox, Philippine warty pig, Philippine brown deer, Giant Scops Owl and many others as well as exotic faunas too. On top of it, PEC showcases different types of Eagles to my surprise , to find a plenty of them!
Spending an hour touring around, I had thought in back of my mind. “Why do these birds have to be caged? Should they be living freely in their natural habitat? Were they supposed to be flying and soaring above the blue sky?” I said to myself. “Personally, I think they are better off that way.”
But I was reminded that not all human are kind towards their kind that lead to their extinction. Putting them in a safe and secured facility along with the selfless service of the Philippine Eagle Center volunteers. It brings light and hope for these birds to breed, live long and protected for our future generation.
Getting to Philippine Eagle Center
The Philippine Eagle Centre (PEC) is at Malagos, Baguio District, Davao City. Just an hour drive from the city center via private or public transport. A taxi can take you to PEC for PHP 1,500 – 3,000 depends on your haggling skills.
For public transport. Head off to Annil terminal at corner Quirino and San Pedro Extension near Bangkerohan terminal. Ride on buses going to Calinan, trips is every 15 minutes. From Calinan, ride for a pedicab or a motorcycle heading to Davao Water District. From the Davao Water District walk a few meters to the PEC main entrance.
For inquiries and reservation, you may reach them at info[@]philippineeagle.org or call them at +6382-2243021. PEC opens at 8 in the morning until 5 in the afternoon daily, including holidays.
*Estimated Budget for Philippine Eagle Center tour
- From accommodation to Annil terminal: PHP 7.00
- Annil terminal to Calinan: PHP 30.00
- Calinan bus stop to Water District via tricycle: PHP 15.00
- From Water District to Calinan bus stop: PHP 15.00
- Calinan to Annil terminal: PHP 30.00
- Annil terminal to accomodation: PHP 7.00
- Davao Water District: PHP 5
- Philippine Eagle Center : PHP 150.00
Souvenir items and snacks (optional)
Total: PHP 259.00
Note: * Prices are quoted as of press writing and subject to change
06:00 AM Wake up call
07:00 AM Breakfast
08:00 AM Head off to Annil Terminal
08:30 AM Ride a bus/ jeepney going to Calinan Station
09:30 AM Be at Calinan and ride a tricyle or motor bike to Davao Water District
09:50 AM Be at Davao Water District
10 : 00 AM Start the tour in Philippine Eagle Center
- Recommended stay would be an hour or two
11: 30 AM Head off to Malagos Garden for a Bird show
12: 00 PM Lunch at Malagos Garden
01:00 PM Head back to Calinan Station
01: 30 PM Ride a bus going back to the city via Annil Station
02: 30 PM Be in Annil Station
03:00 PM Back in accommodation and rest
Up close with the Philippine Monkey-eating Eagle
That close encounter with the Philippine monkey-eating eagle was the highlight of our visit. They are larger than life in person. The strong and imposing statuesque is fierce like a Filipino warrior. I can’t be any prouder seeing them alive and in perfect shape. Additionally, I was amused by the baby eagles we have seen.
Seeing the cages of bigger birds, I kept my eyes for any sighting but they seem illusive to me but I never gave up. In a blink of an eye, I never saw it coming. The mighty Philippine Monkey-eating eagle just came out from its nest. I blown away with its hugeness. The wide wings spread and vivid colors left me breathless for a moment. Under its shadow, I felt its presence and power. It was the most intimate moment with the Philippines National Bird at Philippine Eagle Center.
The facility is geared to promote and educate the people. For several years now, they are running out of pure passion to in saving the Philippine eagle. I was moved when I learned this. More importantly, the foundation and center wants to reach more people to spread its message through word of mouth , blogs, media. Let’s help save the forest and the Philippine Eagle! It’s time to take our part. Visit them soon, it’s worth it.
I’ll end this post with a borrowed words from Arthur Schopenhauer that goes, “Great men are like eagles, and build their nest on some lofty solitude. ”
Thank you for dropping by mate.
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