A total of 11, 764 Crown-of-Thorns (COTs) starfish were collected by 20 fisher folks in Barangay Taluya, Glan, Sarangani Province during the celebration of Coral Triangle Initiative (CTI) in Sarangani Bay on Thursday, June 9.
According to Joy C. Ologuin, protected area superintendent (PASu) of the Sarangani Bay Protected Seascape (SBPS), the said activity is part of the continuous effort of the SBPS Protected Area Management Office (PAMO) to contain the damages caused by the coral predators.
"Partnership will always be a strategy to combat the effects COTs. The coastal communities are our strategic partners, and with their effort, we are rewarding them 25 kilos sack of rice for every 500 COTs that they will collect," she said.
PASu Ologuin said that they have awarded a total of 25 sacks of 25 kilos of rice during the program.
In an interview, DENR Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer (PENRO) of Sarangani Maria Elvira V. Lumayag said "COT is a big problem in our seascape as it poses threats to our environment and the livelihood of the people. But the good thing is, we are seeing our efforts in effect."
COTs infestation in the bay started during the last quarter of 2021. To date, more than 150, 000 COTs were already collected. The CTI celebration was participated by the CENRO Glan, PAMO personnel, local government unit of Glan, and communities. | With report and photos from PAMO-SBPS