The World Heritage Committee has approved the inclusion of Mt. Hamiguitan in Davao Oriental in the prestigious United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage List during its 38th session in Doha, Qatar from June 15 to 25.
Mt. Hamiguitan is the sixth site in the Philippines in the World Heritage List and the first in Mindanao.
According to the UNESCO description, the 6,834-hectare Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary “is the only protected forest noted for its unique bonsai field or ‘pygmy’ forest of 100-year old trees in an ultramafic soil.”
It is also the home of the Philippine eagle, the second largest eagle in the world.
“Mount Hamiguitan is highly significant in the Philippines’ 7th ranking among the 17 biologically rich countries of the world. The site represents the fast disappearing habitats of globally important species of plants and animals. The diversity of habitats and plant and animal species in this property is attributed to the geologic setting, that is, Mount Hamiguitan is an ultramafic terrain giving rise to an ultramafic forest and associated diverse habitats and flora and fauna.
“At the national level, this sanctuary is a conservation interest. At a global scale, it is known to be a habitat of globally important species of plants and animals,” describes UNESCO.
The full description can be accessed here.