November 26, 2022

As part of the continuing effort in conserving the Ifugao heritage sites, the Ifugao State University (IFSU) and Ifugao Satoyama Meister Training Program (ISMTP) Alumni Network conducted a tree planting on Aug. 14 at Kinakin, Banaue.
At least 50 grafted pomelos and lemons were added to the previous seedlings planted in the area for the reestablishment of the butterfly sanctuary in the mountains of Kinakin.
The sanctuary is an offshoot of the research project of Arky Ralph T. Dulnuan, an ISMTP alumnus.
In his research, “Species Composition and Seasonal Change of Butterfly Assemblage in Different Elevations in Mount Inulitan, Kinakin, Banaue, Ifugao,” it identified that pomelo and lemon trees are one of the best host plants for butterflies.
The butterfly sanctuary will serve as a haven for butterflies especially for the endangered species.
In his paper, Dulnuan identified 28 species of butterflies, belonging to four families and seven subfamilies were found in the different elevations of the study site.
Of these, two species, Papilio Chikae and Papilio Benguetana are consi-dered endangered by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
According to the Tropical Conservation Science, the presence of various species of butterflies in an area serves as bio-indicators.
“I am very thankful for all these efforts to help me establish a butterfly sanctuary. With ISMTP, I learned more about butterflies and their importance in the ecosystem. My family sees endeavour as an opportunity to promote the importance of butterflies in our biodiversity,” said Dulnuan.
The greening activities of the ISMTP alumni will continue in the coming weeks to cover Kiangan and Hungduan, Ifugao. In these areas, indigenous trees will be planted to contribute in preserving endemic trees in the rice terraces.
Eulalie D. Dulnuan, director for the Ifugao Rice Terraces as Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems Center of IFSU said the school is committed in the conservation of the IRT not only for its aesthetic value but for food security in our communities.
“One of our programs is to capacitate and assist members of the community to realize their projects in heritage conservation,” he said.
She added these initiatives are also designed to maximize environmental and heritage volunteers in this time of pandemic. “While the pandemic brought great impacts to our communities, it is also a time to do relevant activities that involve different stakeholders in heritage conservation.”
The team also monitored the progress of previously planted trees in the past. – Jude C. Baggo