Philippine Green Sea Turtle released in Lanao del Norte

LINAMON, Lanao del Norte (MindaNews / 19 November) – A juvenile Philippine Green Sea Turtle (Chelonia mydas) was set free at the coastal village of Magoong in this town on Thursday afternoon, November 18.

Beach goers watch as the Green Sea Turtle struggles back into the sea in Linamon, Lanao del Norte on Thursday, Nov. 18, 2021. MindaNews photo by RICHEL V. UMEL

Gilbert Lacida Jr., a municipal councilor of Linamon said a fisherman reported and turned over the endangered species, which was entangled in a fishnet, around 11:00 a.m. on the same day.

Alleson Daroy, who manages the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-accredited Wildlife Rescue Center in Sitio Bayug in Hinaplanon, Iligan City, came to examine the physical condition of the turtle.

Daroy said it is about one year old and measured 17 inches and still in good health condition.

With the presence Dondon Comeda, a representative of a fisherfolks cooperative, the turtle was released back into the sea.

Daroy said there are five endangered species of turtles  in the country – the Green Sea Turtle, Hawksbill Turtle, Loggerhead Turtle, Leatherback Turtle and Olive Ridley Sea Turtle.

He said the area from Linamon to Dalipuga along Iligan Bay is a nesting site of the Green Sea Turtle.

Happy Malacas, a member of Lanao Divers Club based in Linamon said a turtle was seen near the shore of Poblacion Linamon during the “Scubasurero” coastal cleanup drive dive mission in October.

Scuba divers from the Philippine National Police Region 10 joined the cleanup drive.

Mayor Randy J. Macapil, urged the residents and beachgoers to properly dispose of their garbage.

Macapil urged them not to throw their garbage into the sea, as it might be swallowed by marine turtles, dolphins and whales that thrive in Iligan Bay.

“We will strongly enforce the environmental laws in order to protect, preserve and sustain the coastal environment and balance the ecology,” he said.

“With the participation of the community, the protection of the environment is a vital factor to attain food security amidst the pandemic,” he added.

Linamon’s coastline stretches six kilometers. (Richel V. Umel/MindaNews)