THE Taw’buid is the largest of the eight Mangyan tribes of Mindoro. Once occupying Mindoro’s lowlands, they were pushed deep into the mountains by both Spanish colonizers and Filipino immigrants.
Many still sport loincloths called amakan, hunt game with spears called tulag, bows called gadun and spike traps called silo. Unlike other Mangyans who chew betel-nut, nearly all Taw’buid men smoke tobacco—children included.
A collaboration among World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Far Eastern University (FEU), National Geographic Channel, Primer Group of Cos., Banco de Oro and the Philippine government aims to improve the lives of Mindoro’s secretive tribesmen, while conserving the tamaraw, Earth’s rarest buffalo species.
A photo exhibit on the Taw’buid by Gregg Yan of WWF-Philippines is ongoing on the FEU campus in Manila.