News and UpdatesIn the NewsFish nets eyed in pawikan deaths

Fish nets eyed in pawikan deaths

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The Provincial Environment & Natural Resources Office in Negros Oriental is investigating the deaths of green sea turtles (pawikan) in Barangay Inalad in Siaton town in recent weeks.

Jeannette Orcullo, PENRO information officer, told the media on Thursday their office has received a report of the demise of the sea turtles that were washed ashore on separate occasions.

“We still have to find out the circumstances behind the deaths of these sea turtles considering that there is not enough information available yet,” Orcullo said.

Residents of Barangay Inalad said they are hopeful the Department will dig deeper into these incidents as some said they are fearful that a recent project called lambaklad fisheries established in the area may have caused the deaths of the sea turtles.

Lambaklad is a fish- collecting net corral about 200-300 meters long and 40 meters wide, or the length of two football fields, that traps fish even from 30 to 40 meters deep.

Maria Lina Eparwa, a resident of Inalad, said it is unusual for the community to have so many turtle deaths reported in their village.

Eparwa witnessed a few weeks ago and even took photos of a dead sea turtle that was washed ashore and whose body was torn apart.

“The sad part is that no official documentation has been made of these incidents as the turtle carcasses had to be buried immediately. So there is no way to determine as yet what had caused their deaths,” she said.

The green sea turtle is classified as endangered with a declining population, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Endangered Species.

Eparwa said members of the fishermen’s association who benefit from the lambaklad fisheries refuted the claims of residents that the nets caused the deaths of the sea turtles.

She said more than 10 sea turtles have beached in recent months, and were immediately buried as they decomposed fast.

Eparwa said a resort in the village had also buried at least three dead sea turtles recently. (Judy F. Partlow/PNA)

 

 

 

 

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