DENR secures nesting ground of Giant Sea Turtle in Agusan Norte

The personnel of the CENRO Nasipit in Agusan del Norte under CENRO Alejandara Boiser  on Tuesday have secured a nesting ground of the endangered green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas sp.) at the coastal village  of Sacol, in  Buenavista town, this province  to protect the 80 eggs left by  the giant reptile at the beach to forage on the sea.

“I immediately instructed the head of the wildlife section in my office to ensure the safety of the marine turtle eggs on that beach from predators “, CENRO Boiser told the Manila Bulletin.

A group of fishermen were going to fish at dawn when they stumbled upon a hole gaped at the beach and discovered the eggs of giant sea turtle. The fishermen told the DENR that the sea turtle was seen crawling on the sand seaward before being swallowed by the rolling wave.

This is the second time that the fisher folk in that coastal village found a nest on that spot this year. “Perhaps, this could be the season when the giant turtle are coming back to the beach to lay their eggs“, CENRO Boiser said. “The area should be declared a protected nesting site for the sea turtles“, she said.

     CENRO Boiser has lauded the effort by the fisher folk to inform the authorities of the turtle nest after they accidentally found it. She said “otherwise those eggs could have been eaten by stray animals in the area and worst, the eggs could have been consumed by men for breakfast meal” she said.

       “Chelonia mydas” which is also known as Pacific green turtle is classified as endangered since they are threatened by overharvesting of their eggs, hunting of adults, being caught in fishing gear and loss of nesting beach sites. Predators like tiger sharks, are known for eating sea turtles. Dogs, seabirds, raccoons, ghost crabs and other predators prey on eggs and hatchlings.

            A female Green Sea Turtle can lay up to 200 eggs on a beach per laying season. After about two months, the baby sea turtles hatch and the hatchlings make their way to the water.

                At least 10-kilometer coastline of Agusan del Norte from the town of Carmen to Buenavista are considered nesting site of giant sea turtles of various kinds. Local Government in the municipality of Carmen has declared at least three kilometres stretch of beach as marine sanctuary.

 

By: Herzon F. Gallego

 

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