𝐀𝐋𝐀𝐁𝐄𝐋, 𝐒𝐚𝐫𝐚𝐧𝐠𝐚𝐧𝐢 𝐏𝐫𝐨𝐯𝐢𝐧𝐜𝐞 – The female Olive ridley sea turtle that was stranded and rescued on Monday (January 9) along the shores of Purok Pananggalon, Barangay Poblacion in Malapatan town, returned to its natural habitat after several days of rehabilitation.
According to a report, Engr. Joey Coliao, municipal environment and natural resources officer (MENRO) of Malapatan, alerted the DENR regarding the live stranding of a marine turtle which was in a weakened condition due to hook ingestion.
The marine wildlife was immediately rescued and transported by local rescuers to SBPS Marine Wildlife Rescue Center located at Barangay Ladol in this town, where Dr. Roy Mejorada, in-house veterinarian of SBPS-PAMO, conducted a surgical operation to remove the steel wire in the turtle's throat. After several days, the rescued olive ridley regained its appetite and vitality, and was released back to its natural habitat along the shores of Barangay Ladol on Friday (January 13).
"We owe it to the quick response of our local partners and Bantay Dagat that we were able to do a timely rescue and rehabilitation,” said SBPS Protected Area Superintendent (PASu) Joy Ologuin. "During this turtle nesting season, we highly encourage our stakeholders, coastal communities, and local industries to keep our beaches clean to give ample space for the marine turtles, locally known as pawikan, to lay their eggs," urged DENR PENRO Sarangani Maria Elvira Lumayag.
Sarangani Bay is home to four (4) species of marine turtle: the Green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas), Olive Ridley (Lepidochelys olivacea), Loggerhead Turtle (Caretta caretta), and the critically endangered Hawksbill Turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata).
You too can contribute in making Sarangani Bay a pawikan-friendly bay! If you spot a pawikan coming ashore, you should keep your distance and report the incident to your local Bantay Dagat, MENRO/CENRO, or nearest DENR Office. You can also report the incident to SBPS Hotline Numbers 0909-618-9917 (Smart) or 0995-305-0306 (Globe). (With report and photos from DENR-PENRO Sarangani and SBPS-PAMO) | RSCIGM