‘Lambaklad’ in Negros Oriental town probed over deaths of sea turtles

‘Lambaklad’ in Negros Oriental town probed over deaths of sea turtles
File Photo/Pixabay

THE Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (Penro) in Negros Oriental is investigating the deaths of green sea turtles or “pawikan” in Barangay Inalad in Siaton town in recent weeks.

Jeannette Orcullo, Penro information officer, told the Philippine News Agency on Thursday that 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 are hopeful that the department will dig deeper into these incidents as some are fearful that a recent project called “lambaklad” fish corral established in the area may have caused the deaths of the sea turtles.

“Lambaklad” is a Japanese term used for a fishing method that utilizes nets to trap fish.

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 IUCN (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 had 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 said village had also buried at least three dead sea turtles recently. (PNA)

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