The 212-centimeter-long specimen of the critically endangered leatherback sea turtle that died in July last year after having been entangled in a fishing net has now arrived in the National Museum of the Philippines (NMP) and will soon be put this on display at the Natural History Gallery of the National Museum Bohol.
With a signed tripartite Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) among the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Region 7, Provincial Government of Bohol, and the NMP, the process of preservation and taxidermy of the specimen was completed.
The process took over four months and the specimen has finally been air-freighted to the NMP’s Taxidermy Laboratory in Manila for final processing and preservation.
“In the near future, we are aiming to put this on display at the Natural History Gallery of the National Museum Bohol,” the NMP said.
Leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) belonged to the vulnerable population of sea turtles amid poaching and over-exploitation.
The NMP said the stranding incident in Bohol last year is also considered rare as “a fresh specimen of the species is rare to come by in the country.”
The leatherback turtle died last July 12, 2020 after it was entangled in a fishing net and found dead in the coastal waters of Talibon, Bohol.
The DENR – Community Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) of Talibon responded to the stranding report by promptly examining the leatherback turtle and coordinating with Talibon LGU for disposal.
The carcass was buried by the responders. It was later exhumed and transferred to the Talibon ice plant.