The endangered first level protected species, the bear eagle, is the largest diurnal predator in Taiwan. The unique triangular pattern of the bear eagle has a legend from the Paiwan and Rukai tribes. Bear eagle feathers are a status symbol and can only be worn by tribal leaders. Dai, but the bear eagle faces threats such as habitat loss and the illegal hunting trade. The Wildlife Conservation Institute of Pingtung University and other units have promoted the “Bear Eagle Simulation Feather Drawing Workshop” for 5 years. This guide will henceforth be performed at the Pingtung Forestry Inn to promote tribal culture and bear and eagle conservation.
Professor Sun Yuanxun of Pingtai Wildlife Conservation Institute and Zhong Jinan, the developer and craftsman of fake feathers, have been promoting “Bear Eagle Simulation” in cooperation with the Forestry Department Pingtung Branch since 2018 to protect the ecology. Take in the history and culture of Bear Eagle and the Paiwan and Ruakai peoples. “Feather Drawing Workshop”, this time for the first time, exhibited 33 works of fake bear and eagle feathers, fake bear and eagle feather fans and fake bear eagle crowns.
Sun Yuanxun said that the bear eagle is the only bird of prey in Taiwan that can catch macaques. According to the legends of the Paiwan and Rukai tribes, the leader turns into a hundred-stepped snake after death, and then the hundred-stepped snake turns into a bear eagle to protect the tribe; Only leaders may wear the bear eagle’s fake feathers. Dai has visited more than 20 tribes in Gaopingdong in the past five years, attended by 300 people, and taught fake feather painting techniques to tribal leaders and nobles.
Sun Yuanxun said that the black market price of bear eagle feathers is thousands of Taiwan dollars, and he hopes to reduce poaching. Although it is an artificial feather, it still follows tribal restrictions and cannot be worn casually. About half of the traditional leaders of the Rukai tribe accept it, and the Paiwan tribe also accept it. It even reached 40%.
Du Zhengji, chairman of the Rukai National Assembly, said that about ten thousand people of Paiwan and Rukai people need to use bear and eagle feathers. Bear and eagle feathers are very expensive and difficult to buy in the market. However, the technology of making fake feathers has implications for the tribes and how it is implemented in the future. A thorough investigation is still required, and tribal approval is still required.
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