Only in the Philippines will you find a great number of rare and exotic animals. The sourrounding waters of this country alone have been reported to have the highest level of biodiversity in the world. It is home to 165 species of mammals, 121 of which can be found only in this part of the world. There are about 86 species of birds and about 895 species of butterflies making the Philippines home of the highest concentration of birds and butterflies in the world.
In a study by the Philippine Congress, sadly 123,000 hectares of the country's forest cover are lost every year. It also added that by 2036 there would be no forest left in the Philippines unless reforestation is started.
The endangered Philippine eagle is one of the largest in the world. Also known as the monkey-eating eagle, it lives in the rainforests of Isabela, Samar, Leyte, and Mindanao. The average Philippine eagle has a 76 centimeter highly arched, powerful bill. It stands about one meter in height and creates its nests in large trees about 30 meters from the ground. It feeds on large snakes, hornbills, civet cats, flying lemurs, and monkeys - which is why it's also called the monkey-eating eagle. This eagle is in danger of extinction with an estimated population of only 100 to 300 today.
Flying lemurs are one of the most distinct creatures on Earth. Although it does not have wings, it can glide across 100 meters of space in a single leap. It moves around at night, it's head resembling a dog while it's body is similar to the flying squirrel of Canada. Around the world it's known as the colugo or flying lemur. People in Mindanao call it "kagwang". According to zoologists, though called a Flying Lemur, It doesn't fly and is not a lemur. The average kagwang weighs from 1 to 1.7 kilograms and ranges in length from 14 to 17 inches. Its head is wide with small ears and big eyes. Its tail is 12 inches long connected by a membrane stretching from forelimbs to tail. This enables the kagwang to glide 100 meters or more to escape predators like the Philippine Eagle.
This endangered species endemic to the Philippines is found in the southeastern part of the archipelago particularly in the provinces of Bohol, Samar, Leyte and Mindanao Philippines. The Philippine Tarsier, also known as "mawmag" in Cebuano/Visayan is a tiny animal only about 4 to 6 inches in height. Being so small, it is difficult to discover. The average adult is about the size of a human fist and will fit very comfortably in the human hand. Its eyes are fixed and not able to move, but it is able to rotate its head 180 degrees. It's large eyes are disproportionate to its head and body, but are perfect for night vision since they are nocturnal. The Tarsier is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest eyes on a mammal. They can be found clinging vertically to trees and are capable of leaping from branch to branch. They feed on live insects, spiders, small crustaceans, as well as small lizards and birds.
Philippine Bamboo Bat
The Philippines has at least 56 species of bats. In other parts of the country, several bat species are now believed to be extinct.The smallest bat in the world, belonging to the vespertilionid family is the Philippine Bamboo Bat. It is only about 1 1/2 inches in length and has a wingspan of 15 cm. It only weighs about 1/20 ounce.
Philippine Mouse Deer
The Philippine Mouse Deer is the worlds smallest hoofed mammal. Its home is the Balabac Island, south of Palawan. Known by locals as Pilandok (Tragulas Nigricans), this little animals stands only about 40 centimeters at shoulder level. Contrary to its name, Pilandok is not a member of the deer family. The male species use large tusk-like canine teeth on its upper jaw for self-defense; in the same way a deer uses its antlers.
Know in Southeast Asia as binturong, the Palawan Bearcat is niether a bear nor a cat and is a species all its own. Besides Palawan this species can also be found in Borneo, Burma, and Vietnam. Its head and body measure 61 to 96 centimeters in combined length while its tail is almost as long. It weighs 9 to 14 kilograms and can live up to 20 years. Its thick black fur is used by hunters for making clothes and caps. It is usually found awake at night searching for food, using its tail to climb trees where it hides in the leaves.
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lol day on June 19, 2012:
wow,i didn't even know some of them existed! it helped with my school project tons!
MalaSuerte on January 21, 2012:
People doesn't seem to realize that there are a lot more rare and exotic animals here in our country. Did you know that there tons of tarantulas and scorpions here that are not yet properly identified?
Lawrence on October 05, 2011:
Cute creaturesssss ^^
_cheryl_ (author) from California on September 08, 2011:
Thank you lundmusik, I'll be sure to check out your hubs! :)
lundmusik from Tucson AZ on August 30, 2011:
what a beautiful hub, both in the way it's constructed, as well as the content.
All three of my hubs have been on animals,, can you tell me what you think?
_cheryl_ (author) from California on August 01, 2011:
Thanks fashion :)
fashion on July 31, 2011:
Really amazing hub.I had never heard of such things until reading this article.Well done
_cheryl_ (author) from California on July 27, 2011:
Thank you RalphGreene :)
RalphGreene on July 23, 2011:
_cheryl_ (author) from California on June 28, 2011:
Thanks kerlynb! I'm so jealous!! That's awesome that you saw the eagle AND tarsier...the 2 that I'd most like to see myself and photograph!! One day... :)
kerlynb from Philippines, Southeast Asia, Earth ^_^ on June 26, 2011:
Useful hub! I've personally seen a Philippine eagle (monkey-eating eagle) in Davao, Philippines and I was stunned. It was really huge! I also saw a tarsier in Bohol, Philippines. It was so small it could sit on a small leaf.
_cheryl_ (author) from California on February 15, 2011:
Thanks, glad you enjoyed it rey!
rey on February 15, 2011:
_cheryl_ (author) from California on November 18, 2010:
Thanks so much for your comment and vote up Lita. I'm a huge admirer of nature and wild life. It's amazing all the many species of animals that reside in the Philippines!
Lita C. Malicdem from Philippines on November 18, 2010:
This is an informative hub for students. This will serve as a handy reference as the need arises. Interesting animals. The Bearcat is probably the "kantaw" (wild cat) our parents used to mention in their lullabies to force children to sleep. It stays awake the whole night and watches for children who are bad to take away with them in the forest. Haha! Beautiful and vote up!
_cheryl_ (author) from California on April 21, 2010:
Thanks Granny's House! So your other half is Filipino, have you guys ever been there to visit? =)
Granny's House from Older and Hopefully Wiser Time on April 21, 2010:
Great pictures. My husband's family are from the philippines. I liked the one of the Eagle.
_cheryl_ (author) from California on April 11, 2010:
Thank you GarnetBird. I love learning of unusual animals too! I will be checking out your hub. =)
Gloria Siess from Wrightwood, California on April 10, 2010:
AWESOME work, Cheryl! Check out my Hub on the Mexican Red Knee Tarantula. I have a fondness for unusual animals. I really loved the eagle and the bearcat. WOW.
_cheryl_ (author) from California on February 11, 2010:
Ooh, I'd love to see some home videos of the animals there!
deegle from Ventura County California on February 10, 2010:
It is really amazing the kinds of animals that can be seen here in the Philippines. My favorite are the monkeys. I hope to get some on video to post and also the bats. Still trying to find them pesky fliers.
_cheryl_ (author) from California on February 08, 2010:
The Mouse Deer, yeah. Can you imagine if those things ran around here like mice? Literally like little deer with mouse behavior lol! I'm glad you enjoyed this Lisa. =)
Annalisa from Pennsylvania on February 08, 2010:
This was a good read. The Mouse Deer is so cute! I had never heard of such a thing until reading this article. It really does look like a cross between a mouse and a deer. Interesting!