During a recent hike at Mount Apo, an unfortunate incident served as a reminder of the consequences that can arise when wild animals are treated as if they were domesticated. Mount Apo, standing tall at 9,692 feet, is the highest mountain in the Philippines.
One of the hikers, part of a group that encountered a wild pig during their trek, made the ill-advised decision to approach the animal, offering it food and attempting to take pictures. However, the hungry pig reached its limit and reacted defensively. The incident was captured on video and subsequently shared on The Strolling Mind Facebook page, owned by Kim dela Calzada, the creator of the video.
In her post, dela Calzada explained, “Out of the many, one curious hiker tried to touch it, slowly, like any other animal you want to pet on your first encounter. However, the wild pig, as expected, attacked him after feeling threatened.” Fortunately, the hiker remained unharmed, with only a few rips in his jacket as a result of the encounter.
Following the incident, dela Calzada shared a screenshot of a message from the hiker in the video, Rivera Ronel, who clarified that his intention had been to pick up trash near the pig when it unexpectedly turned on him.
Ronel also expressed remorse for his actions, stating, “Sana maging aral ito sa akin at sa iba pang kasamahan ko sa larangan ng mountaineering at maging aware sa lahat ng bagay pag nasa ganitong sitwasyon,” which translates to “I hope this would be a lesson to me and my fellow mountaineers to be aware in these situations.”
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Davao Region (DENR-Davao) issued a reminder to hikers through a Facebook post, urging them to exercise caution and respect the wildlife. The agency specifically emphasized the importance of avoiding any actions that could provoke wild animals.
“Once again, we are reminding everyone, especially trekkers and climbers, to keep your distance from wild animals and refrain from provoking them,” stated DENR-Davao. They further advised against feeding wild animals, as it disrupts their natural hunting instincts. Their message concluded with a simple directive: “If you see them, let them be.”