DENR urges public to protect sea turtles from extinction

Published January 13, 2022, 7:07 AM

by Marie Tonette Marticio

TACLOBAN CITY – Following the recent release of five endangered green sea turtles in Lapinig, Northern Samar, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources appeals to the public to protect them from extinction.

Dennis Ariño, Senior Ecosystems Management Specialist/Chief, Conservation and Development Section of the Community Environment and Natural Resources in Pambujan, Northern Samar, said all sea turtles are considered threatened species.

Aware of the need to protect marine turtles, four adults and one juvenile green sea turtle were released back to the sea after being caught by a fisherman in a sea coral or ‘bunoan’ in the coastal municipality of Lapinig in Northern Samar. (Photo by Dennis Ariño/Manila Bulletin)

“The green sea turtle is classified as endangered pursuant to the Department Administrative Order 2019-09.

If not protected, they will degrade into critically endangered and eventually they will be extinct,” he explained.

This week, four adult and one juvenile ‘pawikan’ were caught by a fisherman in a fish coral locally known as ‘bunoan.’ The sea turtles were turned over to the local police station and eventually released back in the wild after tagging and making sure that they were in good health condition.

“The community is well-informed that marine turtles are protected species so once they accidentally catch them, they turn them over immediately to authorities,” he said.

He added that in order to boost their campaign, they are looking for a marine turtle breeding area that they will make as a conservation site.

“Sea turtles lay their eggs where they were hatched so we need to find that area and protect it,” he stressed.