Mayor lauds authorities for recovery of hawksbill turtle PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 11 June 2014 14:52

Mayor Beng Climaco has commended personnel from the Coast Guard Zamboanga Station for the recovery of a live hawksbill turtle from fishermen in the waters off Sta. Cruz Island Saturday, June 7.
“We commend our Coast Guard Zamboanga station personnel and other operatives for intercepting last Saturday the possible smuggling of a live hawksbill turtle, a protected/endangered specie in the waters off Sta. Cruz Island,” Mayor Climaco said in her Monday press briefing in City Hall.
While conducting regular patrols at the vicinity of Sta. Cruz Island at around 10:40am Saturday, Zamboanga Coast Guard personnel intercepted a motorbanca and arrested two fishermen onboard for having in their possession a live hawksbill turtle.
Wildlife Enforcement Officer Agaton Baysa Jr. said the hawksbill turtle, a protected specie, measures 18 inches in length and 13.5 inches in width and is estimated to be 10 years old.
Joint investigation conducted by personnel from Zamboanga Coast Guard station and 901st PNP Maritime Group, identified the two fishermen as Alonto Inguan, 42 years old and Bagatsing Katomel, 45 years old—all temporarily residing at the evacuation center at R.T. Lim Boulevard.
Upon being informed of the seizure, Mayor Climaco proceeded to the Coast Guard-Zamboanga station at the port area where the motor banca, the fishermen and the hawksbill turtle were brought for investigation. She lauded and thanked the authorities for their vigilance and urged them to continue with their pro-active measures not only in ensuring the safety and protection at sea but also the preservation and protection of marine and wildlife.
The turtle was later released to its natural habitat by joint personnel from Coast Guard, 901st PNP Maritime Group, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) and Sta. Cruz Island staff at 6pm same day. — Sheila Covarrubias