Baby sea turtles freed back into sea on Pawikan Festival » Manila Bulletin News

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By Franco G. Regala

Nagbalayong Morong, Bataan – Senator Cynthia Villar, together with Bataan Governor Abet Garcia, on Saturday, led a huge crowd in freeing more than a hundred marine turtle hatchlings into the sea during the annual celebration of the Pawikan Festival here.

Freed to sea – Senator Cynthia Villar (second from right) is joined by (from left) Bataan Governor Abet Garcia, Mayor Cynthia Estanislao and Vicky Garcia in releasing baby turtles into the sea as Bataan celebrated the Pawikan Festival last November 25 in Morong, Bataan. (Mar T. Supnad|Manila Bulletin)

The release of the baby sea turtles (Olive Ridley SeaTurtles) was the highlight of the whole-day festivities, which was participated in by more than 5, 000 guests from different sectors in the academe, government and non-government organizations and the students.

Spearheaded by the Bataan Peninsula Tourism Council Foundation, the festival aims to raise public awareness about the importance of marine turtles in the ecosystem and the protection of the environment in general.

In a speech,, Senator Villar commended the provincial government and the tourism council for organizing the festival that provides importance to marine life by promoting and facilitating coastal clean-ups to preserve and protect marine animals against pollution and other human-caused damages.

“It is truly good to know that the people of Bataan who used to exploit the endangered turtles are now the ones protecting our endangered species. Ako ay nagagalak at ito’ymagandanghalimbawananagpapatunaynaangresidente ng probinsyangayon ay environmentally aware na (I am glad that this is a good example of how your residents in the province are now environmentally aware) and better informed,” the senator said.

“We cannot exploit the environment or our natural resources without suffering the consequences. Kaya napakagandangmalamannabagolumala at mahulianglahat ay narealize ng taga Bataan angkahalagahan ng pawikan at importantengpapelnitosakalikasanna di mababayaran ng anumanghalaga That’s why it is important to know that before things get any worse, people from Bataan will realize the importance of the pawikan and its important invaluable role in nature),” she added.

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