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Location Philippines, Region X
Central coordinates 124o 54.00' East  8o 6.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A2
Area 31,297 ha
Altitude 700 - 2,938m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Haribon Foundation



Site description Mt Kitanglad National Park includes an extensive mountain range with about a dozen peaks, the main ones being Mt Imbayao, Mt Kaatoan, Mt Nangkabulos, Mt Dulangdulang and Mt. Kitanglad itself. The park contains large areas of montane and mossy forest. However, there is little forest there below 1,000 m and many areas have no forest below 1,400 m, and most of what remains is secondary growth lowland forest. Mt. Imbayao has the most extensive remaining lowland forests at 800 to 1,200 m. The peak of Mt. Kitanglad is practically denuded of vegetation because of a fire in 1983. The park is the most important source of water for the adjacent portions of the provinces of Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental, and is the source of numerous rivers. There are several installations around the peak of Mt Kitanglad, e.g. Bukidnon Telephone (BUTEL), Philippine Telephone and Telegraph (PT&T), Philippine Army, Radio Mindanao Network and the Department of Local Government Building, which is used by climbers as a temporary resting place.

Key Biodiversity The Mt Kitanglad range is a popular birdwatching site, and there were biodiversity survey expeditions to the mountains as recently as the 1990s. There are recent records from there of many of the threatened and restricted-range species of the Mindanao and Eastern Visayas Endemic Bird Area. Mt. Kitanglad supports substantial populations of many montane forest specialists, including several which are only known from the higher mountains on Mindanao, such as Mindanao Lorikeet, Mindanao Racquet-tail, Mindanao Scops-owl, Slaty-backed Jungle-flycatcher, Red-eared Parrotfinch and Apo Myna. It is one of only three sites where the poorly known Whitehead's Swiftlet has been recorded. There is also an important population of Philippine Eagle in this IBA. Two subspecies of birds are only recorded from these mountains, Island Thrush Turdus poliocephalus katanglad and Mountain Leaf-warbler Phylloscopus trivirgatus flavostriatus. Many lowland forest species were recorded in the Mt Kitanglad range in the past, but the lowland forests around the base of the mountains have now been almost entirely cleared. This IBA is unlikely to support significant populations of many of these birds, and the paucity of recent record of several of them suggests that they have declined substantially or already become locally extinct, including Spotted Imperial-pigeon, Silvery Kingfisher, Wattled Broadbill and Philippine Leafbird. Some mid-altitude forest birds appear to survive on Kitanglad in significant numbers, notably Mindanao Brown-dove and Lesser Eagle-owl, but they must be vulnerable to any further habitat loss.

Non-bird biodiversity: The known mammal fauna consists of 58 species, including two new species of small non-volant mammals, a shrew-mouse Crunomys suncoides and a moss-mouse Tarsomys sp., discovered in the park in 1993. Other important mammals in the park include Binau or Philippine Brown Deer Cervus mariannus, Baboy Kalasanon or Bearded Pig Sus barbatus, Talibungkok or Mindanao gymnure Podogymnura truei, Unggoy or Long-tailed Macaque Macaca fascicularis, Salumbakutin or Mindanao Tree Shrew Urogale everetti, Kagwang or Philippine Lemur Cynocephalus volans, Tambalingan or Philippine Pygmy Squirrel Exilisciurus concinnus, Kalukag / Kalugit or Mindanao Flying Squirrel Petinomys crinitus and rare bats such as the endemic Mindanao Pygmy Fruit Bat Alionycteris paucidentata, which is known only from Mt Kitanglad. The area is rich in gymnosperms and tree ferns, and more than 300 species of flora used by the indigenous people for herbal medicine, including “ali” Drimys piperita, “kappa-kapa tree” Medinilla magnifica, and the pitcher plant Nepenthes truncata in the montane forest.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Philippine Duck Anas luzonica resident  2001  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Philippine Eagle Pithecophaga jefferyi resident  2001  present  A1  Critically Endangered 
Nisaetus philippensis resident  2001  present  A1  Not Recognised 
Dark-eared Brown-dove Phapitreron brunneiceps resident  2001  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Spotted Imperial-pigeon Ducula carola resident  2001  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Giant Scops-owl Otus gurneyi resident  2001  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Philippine Eagle-owl Bubo philippensis resident  2001  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Blue-capped Kingfisher Actenoides hombroni resident  2001  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Mindanao Broadbill Eurylaimus steerii resident  2001  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Philippine Leafbird Chloropsis flavipennis resident  2001  present  A1  Vulnerable 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Mount Kitanlad Range Natural Park 27,102 protected area contained by site 27,102  

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial   -
Forest   -

Protection status Mt Kitanglad National Park was declared by Proclamation No. 667 on 14 December 1990. As a priority area of NIPAP, it was declared as Mt Kitanglad Natural Park by Presidential Proclamation No. 896 on 24 September 1996 with an area of 29,716 ha. The area proposed under the GEF CPPAP includes a buffer zone of 74,100 ha. It is covered by the DENR-NORDECO Technical Assistance for Improving Biodiversity Conservation Project funded by Denmark through the World Bank.

References Haribon Foundation (1998); Heaney et al. (1993); Lambert (1993); NORDECO and DENR (1998); Peterson et al. (in prep.); Rickart et al. (1998).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Mount Kitanglad Range Natural Park. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 23/12/2014

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