DA-BFAR celebrates World Sea Turtle Day this June 16, 2020
DA-BFAR celebrates World Sea Turtle Day this June 16, 2020. This celebration honors and emphasizes the importance of sea turtles to the well-being of our marine biodiversity. It also coincides with the birthday of Dr. Archie Carr, the father of sea turtle biology.
Sea turtles, known as "pawikan" in Filipino, have remained mostly unchanged since the time of dinosaurs. These ancient animals perform many essential roles in the marine ecosystem, such as keeping the population of sponges, jellyfish and sea grass in check. However, they remain under constant threat.
All five species of sea turtle that can be found in the Philippines are listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List as either vulnerable, endangered, or critically endangered. With this, the need to preserve these magnificent animals becomes apparent.
In celebration of the World Sea Turtle Day, here are some ways you can help protect sea turtles:
IF YOU LIVE IN A BEACH-FRONT RESIDENCE, TURN OFF YOUR LIGHTS. Lights cause nesting and hatchling turtles to wander. Simple efforts like closing your blinds, turning off your lights or using sea turtle friendly lighting encourage nesting and help hatchlings go in the right direction.
CLEAN UP THE BEACH. Get rid of any waste in beaches that might impede a turtle's nesting. Securing the cleanliness of a beach, clearing away any sandcastles and filling holes in the ground will ensure that turtles will have a clean nesting ground and that there is nothing in the way of hatchlings while they’re making their way to the ocean.
RECYCLE YOUR WASTE. Plastic remains one of the major threats to turtles, as any that ends up in the oceans gets eaten by turtles, being mistaken for jellyfish. Over 100 million marine animals are killed each year due to plastic debris. So, recycling plastic waste is of great help in helping preserve sea turtles and other marine animals.
SPREAD THE WORD. Every year, we celebrate World Sea Turtle Day on June 16. Telling friends and family and posting about it on social media raises awareness about sea turtles and the various efforts done to protect them.