This sample essay on Planet Philippines Documentary reveals arguments and important aspects of this topic. Read this essay’s introduction, body paragraphs and the conclusion below.
Miguele Alfonso M. Ramos CN: 32 Reaction paper about the documentary film “Planet Philippines” The documentary film “Planet Philippines” hosted by Richard Gutierrez was the biggest environmental project of 2009. Planet Philippines took the viewers on a grand and awesome journey into our country’s wilderness sites. They traveled around Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao to examine the diverse Philippine landscape, seascape, and underground terrain.
The film began with our daily activities (eating, drinking, and sleeping) and all of us became busy because of these activities, but little did we know that all of us are connected to one environment that even though it seems far, it plays an important role in our lives. Like Richard Gutierrez said “marami na tayong alam sa siyudad, alamin naman natin ang ating kalikasan”. Their first destination was Alcoy forest located at the heart of Cebu.
In this type of environment, we can clearly see that all species are connected to one another. Almost all of it is endemic species which means that they can be found only in our country.
On the roof of the forest, the no. of species found in Luzon is far greater than the whole North America. The Philippines is a bird paradise which have almost 200 endemic species. It showcased one of the rare species of bird which is black shama (Copsychus cebuensis), also known as Siloy.
The host discussed some of its distinct characteristics and why they have become endangered species. On the forest floor, the frogs like Luzon striped frog (Rana similis), taylor’s frog (Limnonectes hascheanus) and Philippine wrinkled ground frog (Platymantis sierramadrensis) can be found only in Sierra Madre.
Mindanao is blessed to have several forest and some of it are pigny forest (trees that are relatively small). Example is the Almasiga tree which is relatively short and small but already lived for 100 years. If the trees were short in the forest, therefore its organisms are also small. Hamiguitan Rat (Batomys hamiguitan) is one of it. This was discovered only 5 years ago. Philippines have a vast number of forest and because of this, new species are discovered every year. There are many other forests showed in the movie and the overall rate of this in our country is 3%.
This is due to the fact that deforestation reduces greatly the no. of forests in the Philippines and according to studies; this is the second factor that causes Global Warming. Their next destination was the ocean wherein they dived into the one of the marine biodiversity to see how beautiful it is in the sea. The ocean is so vast and due to that it is somewhat impossible to count all the species living in it. Species of sea slugs like Nudibranch (Chromodoris conchyliata) were discovered last year. Trumpet Fish (Aulostomus maculates) and Bach Fish were also featured.
The corals which are considered to be the rainforest of the ocean are the home of 25% of the fishes globally. It is also the breeding site of the fishes. Oceans are the channel of life from the smallest organisms (planktons, sea horse) up to largest one (manta ray, sharks and whales). The Thresher Shark (Alopias vulpinus), one of the most fierce organism in the ocean can be found greatly in Malapascua, Cebu. As the years passed, the number of living organisms in the oceans are reduced greatly, maybe this is because of over hunting, dynamite fishing, muro ami, pollution and global warming.
In the sea, balance is important like yin and yang. Planktons were eaten by small fishes (clown fish, milkfish etc), small fishes were eaten by large fish (like dolphins) and this large fishes were eaten by larger and more massive fishes (whales and sharks). That is the reason if a small group of species were extinct it will greatly affect the equilibrium of the ecosystem. There are still some marine sites that are free from the hands of abusive humans. Like in Brgy, Lukatan located at Mindanao, home of Mandaya tribe and part of the MILF territory.
There is only one rule in this place, over hunting of fish is prohibited. Species like Lion Fish (Pterois volitans), Sea Snake (Laticauda colubrina) and Hox’s Bill Sea Turtle are banded for capturing because they are enlisted on the “red list” which means that they are prone to extinction. One case was the member of the tribed, he killed a turtle and as a result, the tribe leaders imprisoned him. Do we ever wonder how caves were built? The answer is simple, this is due to the continuous flowing and crashing of sea waves to a rocky place which resulted to form a depression on the rocks and later on, become caves.
The cave sites were the next destination of the team. Philippines alone have thousands of caves and half of it is not yet found which means the discovery of new and endemic species is possible. Before human touched the caves, it has a life on its own hundred years ago. Even though the formation of plants is impossible in the caves, there are still some animals making the caves as their habitat. These species like bats can be found all over the place especially on the roof of the caves and at night they go out of the caves to search food.
After eating, these bats defecate and the feces they excrete serve as a food for other organisms (guano and cockroaches). These small organisms can be eaten by a Whip scorpion (Acanthrophrynus coronatus) in order to survive. Their distinct characteristic compared to other species is that they don’t have venom in their tail. There is one chamber in the cave wherein reticulated phyton (Python reticulatus) can be found. This type of snake can be found only in the Philippines. Last year I was able to witness how beautiful it is in the cave, we went to the Underground Cave in Palawan and I saw various species like the film featured.
There are so many plants and animals species in the Philippines, because of that our country was termed as the mega biodiversity country. But while the Philippines boasts of many marvels, it is also considered one of the hottest of so-called “biodiversity hotspots”, areas in the world where species decline and habitat loss are at alarming levels. A list from the International Union of the Conservation of Nature tells that the Philippines have 641 species that are critically endangered of plants and animals.
Best representative for this is the Monkey Eating Eagle or Philippine Eagle (Pithecophaga jefferyi). The king of the birds is critically endangered and may extinct for the years to come. Main reasons are deforestation and capturing them for invalid purposes. Our country is almost 4 billion years old and our existence is only 200 000 year but our contribution is large enough that change our mother earth. As the population increased our needs also increase. And these needs came from our nature. The forest was converted to cropland and subdivisions.
Freshwater rate decreases due to the spoilage use of homes and factories. There is also unending mining on the mountains. The energy used to move various industries came from the fossil fuels that heat up our country. Compared to the other countries we have less usage of fossil fuels but every year we return 11. 4 billion tons of carbon dioxide in our environment because of deforestation. The loss of forest every year is equal to the size of Cavite and these forests are the habitat of thousands of species. There are laws and regulations on conserving biodiversity like R. A. No. 147 (An act providing for the conservation and protection of wildlife resources and their habitats, appropriating funds therefore and for other purposes). People who do not follow this will be dealt accordingly. Planet Philippines points to the connections between human activities and the state of the environment, and provides practical solutions on how we can help save what is left. It is an important, must-see television event. I commend the bravery of the film for awakening the humans of the present condition of the Philippines, not only our country but the whole world.
With the help of experienced team they delivered the film briefly but comprehensively. This is another great documentary of GMA. I hope that all of us realize the importance of biodiversity and if we not act, all hope is lost. So let us contribute in our own little way to save mother earth and the species especially the endangered ones. Let us pick up the pieces of paper and wrappers of candy every time we saw one. Switch off the lights, electric fans and televisions when not in use. There are many things that we can do to save our only home so let us act now saying “Yes, we can! ”