Abandoned fishpond is now mangrove sanctuary

THE 7.5 hectare area in Brgy. Nabitasan, Leganes planted with 15,000 Miyapi mangrove trees used to be an abandoned fishpond. (Photo courtesy of DENR-CENRO Guimbal)

A FORMERLY abandoned fishpond is now teeming with Miyapi (A. rumphiana) mangrove trees.

In November 2017, the town of Leganes, Iloilo has planted 15,000 trees in the 7.5-hectare area in Sitio Panus-on, Brgy. Nabitasan.

It was part of the enhanced National Greening Program (eNGP) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)-6.

As of Sept 2018, the plantation already reached an average height of 2.5 feet with 92 percent survival rate.

Miyapi is listed as “vulnerable” in the Red List of Threatened Species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

One of its major threats is the continued destruction of mangrove habitat for human settlement.

It can be found in Natuna Island, the Halmahera Islands and Irian Jaya, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, and Papua New Guinea.

DENR-6 Regional Director Jim O. Sampulna said the high survival rate is a proof that the local government of Leganes is keen in enforcing the environmental laws and conducts apprehensions of illegal activities in accordance with Municipal Ordinance No. 2011-227 (Mangrove Protected Ordinance).

“In planting the Miyapi species of mangrove to a once abandoned fishpond, the local government unit of Leganes is like hitting three birds with one stone. It promotes the survival of endangered species while rehabilitating the coastal areas of the town; and when it matures to its full height, these Miyapi trees will serve as vanguard of the coastal areas thus, protecting lives and properties of Leganesnons from possible storm surges,” Sampulna said. (With reports from DENR-6).

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