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Personnel from the DENR National Wildlife Rescue and Research Center train on the use of ultrasound and x-ray machines
donated by USAID. (Photo Credit: USAID Protect Wildlife)

USAID, through its Protect Wildlife project in the Philippines, recently announced new investments to help the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) improve emergency and diagnostic care for rescued wildlife. USAID presented officials with new ultrasound and x-ray machines that will help them diagnose diseases, injuries and conditions of wildlife that are turned over to the National Wildlife Rescue and Research Center (NWRCC).

Presently, wildlife retrieved or rescued in Metro Manila—as well as trafficked exotic wildlife confiscated at airports and other ports of entry—are brought to NWRRC in Quezon City. The center is mandated to take the lead in the care and rehabilitation of wildlife, which often arrive in an agitated state due to their injuries or confinement.

Using the new x-ray and ultrasound machines will increase the efficiency and accuracy of the center’s veterinarians and personnel in giving proper care and treatment for wildlife, and improve the management and prevention of diseases. With these investments, the center no longer needs to outsource diagnostic services and can now promptly address immediate needs of their wildlife patients, assess their health, and rehabilitate them for release.

“We sincerely thank USAID for their support in our advocacy and efforts to conserve, preserve, and protect the Philippines’ biodiversity,” said Dr. Glenn Maguad of NWRCC. Dr. Maguad added that the new equipment will also be used in conducting research on producing baseline values of diagnostic images of native and endemic species. These can help determine the status and medical conditions of wildlife turned over from the different rescue centers in the country.