Recreational Outdoor Exchange (ROX) of Bonifacio High Street
in Taguig City, the biggest recreational outdoor sports hub in Southeast Asia, is
taking a bold step for adventure racing in the country with the ROX Bird Race
Challenge, the first and only race of its kind in the Philippines in partnership
with the Wild Bird Club of the Philippines (WBCP).
Taking cue from events like the famed Fraser's
Hill International Bird Race in Malaysia, Hong Kong's Big
Bird Race and the Singapore Bird Race, the ROX Bird Race Challenge
aims to draw public attention to Metro Manila's remaining
green spaces and threatened wetlands, parks and grassland
habitats, which racers will visit in order to record as many
bird species possible within a 24-hour period.
"The WBCP expects an exciting race and
good numbers of bird arrivals based on our initial surveys
and bird counts," says urban planner and Wild Bird Club
of the Philippines board member Anna Gonzales. Bird species
recorded in Metro Manila numbers more than 100 species at
this time of year, when migrants from mainland Asia and Japan
stay the duration of the winter.
“Bird watching as a popular recreation is fairly new
in the country,” according to Gonzales, who hopes the
bird race will spark ideas about conserving the urban green
areas of Metro Manila and “getting our kids high on
outdoor activities and science.”
The ROX Bird Race Challenge takes off at 3:00 p.m. of December
1 and will continue until 3:00 pm of December 2. According
to WBCP president and race coordinator Michael Lu, 10 teams
combining experienced birdwatchers and new hobbyists with
first-time adventure racers, outdoor enthusiasts and nature
lovers from various walks of life will be competing in the
“We hope to provide the outdoor experience that will
sustain the consciousness for the conservation of the environment,”
according to Roel Chan, marketing manager of Primer Group,
the firm managing ROX. “You can’t say let’s
save the habitat when you haven’t seen the habitat.
We want people to go out there and have that positive feeling
when they come back from this race and get into positive action.”
To highlight the culmination of the race, ROX is holding a
series of activities starting 2:00 pm December 2. A tent set-up
along the promenade fronting Recreational Outdoor Exchange
in Bonifacio High Street will host environmental exhibits,
lectures, an activity corner where kids can practice art skills
and enjoy face-painting and a wildlife conservation show featuring
animals from the DENR Wildlife Rescue Center. These activities
are open to the public free of charge.
For more information, visit Recreational Outdoor Exchange
at Building 1, Bonifacio High Street, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig,
call: 856-4638 or 856-4639 or email the organizers at: Wild
Bird Club of the Philippines, attention Michael Lu, email@example.com.