PH045
Mount Hinunduang


Site description (2001 baseline):

Site location and context
Mt Hinunduang lies at the southern end of the central mountain ranges of Mindoro. Recent forest cover maps show a relatively extensive forest block on the mountain, most of which is presumably montane. A survey was carried out at San Vicente in 1991 in the Watershed of Tauga River below Mt Hinunduang. Fieldwork concentrated on the lower-altitude quality forest and the mountain itself was not visited. No primary forest was found below 550 m although the long valley of the Tauga River, which provides access, had large trees and scattered secondary forest along its sides and floor down to about 150 m. Kaingin and small plantations (of fruit and cash crops) had penetrated most of the valley bottoms up to 500 or 600 m and were scattered through the remaining forest. The forest was of true lowland type at its lowest altitudes, but higher up was impoverished by steep slopes, exposure and recent logging (an abandoned road crosses the area at 750-820 m) and was therefore difficult to assign to type. Small blocks of closed-canopy primary lowland forest persisted on some flatter ridges.

Key biodiversity
Several of the threatened and restricted-range birds of the Mindoro Endemic Bird Area have been recorded on Mt Hinunduang, and the extensive montane forests which remain there are likely to prove to be important for montane species, notably the endemic Mindoro Imperial-pigeon and Mindoro Scops-owl. The areas of lowland forests at San Vicente and possibly elsewhere on the lower slopes of the mountain are also important for the conservation of some of the endemic lowland forest birds of Mindoro, such as Scarlet-collared Flowerpecker.

Non-bird biodiversity: Threatened subspecies of endemic wild pigs occur in this IBA.



Habitat and land use
Mt Hinunduang lies at the southern end of the central mountain ranges of Mindoro. Recent forest cover maps show a relatively extensive forest block on the mountain, most of which is presumably montane. A survey was carried out at San Vicente in 1991 in the Watershed of Tauga River below Mt Hinunduang. Fieldwork concentrated on the lower-altitude quality forest and the mountain itself was not visited. No primary forest was found below 550 m although the long valley of the Tauga River, which provides access, had large trees and scattered secondary forest along its sides and floor down to about 150 m. Kaingin and small plantations (of fruit and cash crops) had penetrated most of the valley bottoms up to 500 or 600 m and were scattered through the remaining forest. The forest was of true lowland type at its lowest altitudes, but higher up was impoverished by steep slopes, exposure and recent logging (an abandoned road crosses the area at 750-820 m) and was therefore difficult to assign to type. Small blocks of closed-canopy primary lowland forest persisted on some flatter ridges.

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
At San Vicente, kaingin and plantations were encroaching into the forest, as described above, and the forest was used for rattan and creeper harvesting, and hunting for birds and (the threatened) wild pigs. Commercial logging operations within Oriental Mindoro have been stopped for quite some time, and the canopy of the logged-over areas has already closed. However, many of these stands are seriously threatened by poaching and slash-and-burn agriculture. The San Vicente area has been zoned by the local DENR for reforestation, timber stand improvement and rattan plantation by concession holders. DENR has plantation sites much lower down the river which were not mature enough in 1991 to take pressure off the natural forests. However, this poses a threat to the area because DENR requires that all secondary growth be cleared prior to planting.

Conservation responses/actions for key biodiversity
The San Vicente area has been zoned by the local DENR for reforestation, timber stand improvement and rattan plantation by concession holders. DENR has plantation sites much lower down the river which were not mature enough in 1991 to take pressure off the natural forests. However, this poses a threat to the area because DENR requires that all secondary growth be cleared prior to planting. Surveys are required in this IBA, to investigate both the extent and quality of the remaining habitats and the current status of the threatened and restricted-range birds and other biodiversity.

Protected areas
Not officially protected.


Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Important Bird Area factsheet: Mount Hinunduang. Downloaded from https://datazone.birdlife.org/site/factsheet/mount-hinunduang-iba-philippines on 28/02/2024.