Flora and Fauna of Mt. Mantalingajan

The grueling trails of Mt. Mantalingajan may have literally brought me to my knees but its natural beauty and astounding biodiversity blew me away.

Conservation International organized a biodiversity survey of the mountain in 2007 which documented 861 plant species including newly discovered ones, 169 species of vertebrates and 90 bird species. The mountain is also home to flora and fauna that are endemic to Palawan as well as to various endangered species.

This terrestrial orchid, a member of the genus Coelogyne, was one of the new discoveries in Mantalingajan. It is very common on the rocky trail from Paray-Paray campsite going to the summit.

This terrestrial orchid, a member of the genus Coelogyne, was one of the new discoveries in Mantalingajan. It is very common on the rocky trail from Paray-Paray campsite going to the summit.


Coelogyne 2

Yellow ground orchid which I’ve also seen in Mt. Guiting-Guiting.

Yellow ground orchid which I’ve also seen in Mt. Guiting-Guiting.

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Resin of the almaciga tree which is commercially used as wood varnish. The almaciga is endemic to the Philippines and is currently classified as an endangered species. (Photo by Jet Reyes)

Resin of the almaciga tree which is commercially used as wood varnish. The almaciga is endemic to the Philippines and is currently classified as an endangered species. (Photo by Jet Reyes)

We saw a lot of this type of spider at the start of our trek on the first day.

We saw a lot of this type of spider at the start of our trek on the first day.

Ant colony

Ant colony

Terrestrial crab

Terrestrial crab

Black butterfly with a heart-shaped orange design on its wings. (Photo by Jet Reyes)

Black butterfly with a heart-shaped orange design on its wings. (Photo by Jet Reyes)

These quirky-looking, bulb-like plants are about an inch in length and grow directly from the ground with no distinct stems or leaves.

These quirky-looking, bulb-like plants are about an inch in length and grow directly from the ground with no distinct stems or leaves.

We’re guessing those bulb-like things in the previous photo look like this in full bloom.

We’re guessing those bulb-like things in the previous photo look like this in full bloom.

A sundew, a carnivorous plant that traps and digests insects through the gel-like substance at the tip of its tentacles. The gel looks like tiny droplets of early morning dew, hence the name.

A sundew, a carnivorous plant that traps and digests insects through the gel-like substance at the tip of its tentacles. The gel looks like tiny droplets of early morning dew, hence the name.

Speaking of carnivorous plants, Mt. Mantalingajan also has an abundance of pitcher plants in its upper elevations. We started seeing a few wilted pitchers on our climb to Paray-Paray. The population steadily increased as we gained altitude. By the time we got to the summit, we were surrounded by pitcher plants. There is even one species, the Nepenthes mantalingajanensis, which can only be found in the summit region of the mountain.

pitcher plant 1

pitcher plant 2

pitcher plant 3

pitcher plant 4

pitcher plant 5

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pitcher plant 7

pitcher plant 8

pitcher plant 9

pitcher plant 10

Due to bad weather during our climb, we were not able to enjoy panoramic views on the summit or even on the numerous peaks we passed by. Good thing we still got to see these.

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15 thoughts on “Flora and Fauna of Mt. Mantalingajan

  1. JP

    Wow love your flora and fauna pics! Biodiversity researcher’s wet dream! I believe that’s where Rey Langit’s son got the malaria that later killed him. I hope you took the necessary precautions

    Reply
    1. Tintin Post author

      Thanks JP! Yes, I’d imagine biologists would go crazy if they see the richness of Manta’s biodiversity. We practically bathed in Off lotion the whole time and wore citronella patches. Malaria prophylaxis was tricky though because the meds can cause adverse side effects and may jeopardize us even more.

      The locals have a different story on the incident concerning Reyster Langit but I’d rather not discuss it.

      Reply
    1. Tintin Post author

      Me too! My mother loves orchids. Hanggang ngayon parang orchidarium ang bakuran namin. Hehe. Kaya natutuwa ako whenever I see orchids in the wild. I can see the level of effort my mom puts into making our orchids bloom at home. Pero sa gubat ang ganda-ganda nila on their own. Ang galing!

      Reply
          1. Tintin Post author

            Hehe figures. Marami rin kami nun sa bahay. My mother taught me rudimentary ways of identifying orchids and flowers (though I’ve forgotten most of them) kaya medyo nadi-distinguish ko naman sila kahit pano. Haha.

            Reply
  2. Pingback: Mt. Mantalingajan Traverse Day 2: A Surprise at Paray-Paray | the fine line

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