Photo: Mt. Timolan Protected Landscape | NMP Western-Southern Mindanao (@natmuseumwsm)


In the Southern Philippines, the Subanuns, who inhabit the Zamboanga Peninsula and Northwestern Mindanao mountain ranges, attribute their worldview to their religious concept of animism. They believe that souls or spirits exist in humans, animals, plants, rocks, geographic features such as mountains or rivers, or other natural environment entities, making them god-fearing and capable of coexisting with nature. The Subanuns are mainly agriculturists. They were swidden farmers, and rice is their staple food. They treat rice with respect and reverence, and wastage or the haphazard way of storing it may result in a bad harvest as it displeases the spirit. Indeed, the Subanuns’ lifestyle reminds us that to sustain people’s livelihood and nature’s total well-being, we must protect and conserve the environment with respect and care.

WORLD WILDLIFE DAY. The UN General Assembly proclaimed March 3 of every year as World Wildlife Day to celebrate and raise awareness of the world’s wild flora and fauna. It also recognizes the critical role of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species and Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in ensuring that international trade does not threaten the survival of species.

This year’s theme of World Wildlife Day 2021, “Forests and Livelihoods: Sustaining People and Planet,” seeks to shed light on the links between the state of our planet’s forests and woodlands. The focus will be on preserving the millions of livelihoods that depend directly on them, particularly on the traditional knowledge of the communities that have managed forest ecosystems and their wildlife for centuries. Wildlife plays a vital role in balancing the environment. It is in all ecosystems and promotes stability to various processes of nature. Wildlife and nature are associated with humans for emotional and social reasons to make ecological balance on earth.

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