A couple of days ago, an unplanned jaunt took me and my friends up in the hills of Tambojangin, some 3.5km from the town center, to spend an afternoon at Dreamland Nature and Adventure Park’s (DNAP) Animal Kingdom.
Having grown my whole life in this small town, I have come across a few of the local species, particularly the Philippine Sailfin Lizard. Ibid as it is known locally is an animal you would expect thriving close to the banks of the Amlan River, as it loves to splash around. Its flattened toes make it a good swimmer and it can grow up to a meter in length. It was not a surprise back in the day, when locals would catch them and make something out of it for a dish, much to the horror of today’s conservationists.
Now classified as a vulnerable species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, much of Ibid’s natural habitat has been increasingly encroached by humans and the species have been pushed further into the mountain forests to find safe havens.
A few are now in the hands of DNAP’s zookeepers, conservation efforts have been done, and I can relax knowing that future generations will be able to see the Ibid, in the flesh, and not just in books or TVs.
(DNAP's admission fees: P100/ADT and P50/CHD)