Chan: Marine buoys meant only to mark fish sanctuaries not trap butandings

By: Futch Anthony Inso - CDN Digital Correspondent | June 10,2022 - 04:35 PM


A butanding, or whale shark, is spotted in the waters off Barangay Marigondon in Lapu-Lapu City. | contributed photo

LAPU-LAPU CITY, Philippines — The marine buoys that Lapu-Lapu City will purchase would only serve as markers for the marine sanctuaries that the city plans to establish and not to trap the whale sharks recently seen in the waters of the island.

This clarification was made by Mayor Junard “Ahong” Chan who said that the installation of buoys to be procured through the City Agriculture and Fisheries Office (CAFO), was only meant to prevent illegal fishers from entering the planned marine sanctuaries.

Chan issued the clarification after netizens reacted negatively to the earlier reported plan of the city to cordon the area where the whale sharks, locally known as butandings were seen.

“Seguro sayop guro ang interpretation nga cordon, dili siya cordon. Mura na siya ug i-declare nato siya ug sanktwaryo ba. Kay kung dili gud nimo butangan ug boya nga under sanctuary siya, basin dili malikayan nga masudlan siya ug illegal fishing,” Chan said.

Whale sharks are nomadic gentle giants of the sea that feed on krill or tiny shrimp.

Earlier, CAFO head Alex Baring stated that they will cordon the seawaters of Marigondon where three whale sharks were spotted recently.

He said this is to prevent the public from disrupting the whale sharks’ activities in the area. CAFO has also started feeding the whale sharks with “oyap” or tiny shrimps.

“Kung cordon mura man nato ug gipriso siya. Open ra, natural ra siya kay illegal baya nang magcordon-cordon ta,” Chan added.

The Mayor also hopes that declaring more marine sanctuaries, will hopefully attract more marine species, not only whale sharks, to visit said areas.

The mayor added that he wants to establish more marine sanctuaries in the seawaters in Barangays Punta Engaño, Mactan, Maribago, Agus, and Marigondon.

Chan revealed that the latest marine sanctuary that was already been approved by the city is located in Barangay Agus. He added that the barangay even purchased a new speedboat to monitor the area and prevent illegal fishers from encroaching it.

Chan said that the city has also deployed personnel to monitor these areas, in coordination with other law enforcement agencies.    /rcg


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TAGS: Agus, CAFO, Cebu Daily News, cebu news, illegal fishing, Lapu-Lapu City, Mactan, Maribago, Marigondon, marine ecosystem, Punta Engano, whale sharks

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