TALIBON, Bohol – Some concerned sectors in the province asked “where’s the exhibit of Danajon Double Barrier Reefs photos as promised?
Other individuals who knew of the underwater photo shoot also inquired the same.
This surfaced lately after almost three years after the undersea shooting of the rare species found only in the only double barrier reef in the country.
It will be recalled that the group of International League of Conservation Photographers (ILCG) and the Project Seahorse Foundation (PSF) in close coordination with DDBR Management Council promised to display the underwater photos in exhibition here and other provinces covered by the reef. In fact, preparations were underway to make this show realized, said a Capitol official said.
The group vowed to make public the said photos for Boholanos to see but things turned out not right after that plan.
The photo exhibits were realized but not here but in Manila and other countries instead, Capitol source said.
The combined conservation and protection efforts to help protect and save the Danajon Double Barrier Reefs (DDBR) from further destruction was and still is necessary. The reefs lie within the vast seawater of four provinces of Cebu, Leyte, Southern Leyte and Bohol, where it’s mostly situated.
But the campaign in raising awareness, especially on the understanding of the prevailing situation of DDBR which is subjected to man-made pressures and lethal fishing methods, is of paramount concern among the conservationists and stakeholders.
And this was how to be the focus of ILCG and the PSF, including the photo exhibits, in close coordination with DDBR Management Council.
The underwater shoots on April 2013 of different species, especially the seahorse, boosted the no-nonsense conservation of the only double barrier reef in southeast Asia.
The week-long shoot underwater off the Bilangbilangan, Batasan, off Tubigon town; Hanbungan and Cuaming, and other islands nearby, off the Inabanga and Buenavista town and Handumon, off Talibon town on the northern part was put together “to launch a conservation campaign on behalf of a rare and threatened double-barrier coral reef” to be able to conserve the unique marine ecosystem —- one of only six double-barrier reefs in the world.
ILCG hastened to say. “Making this project even more powerful is our newest partner networks, which is establishing a community-based supply chain for discarded fishing nets that will improve the livelihood of local fishers while providing an innovative source of recycled materials for sustainably manufactured carpet tiles. For iLCP, there is a great synergy in this project, as Net-Works’ triple bottom line approach to conservation (securing environmental, economic and social benefits) fits well with our mission to further environmental and cultural conservation.”
ILCG photographer Luciano Candisani explains: “By getting this story out into the world, we hope to inspire new environmental protections for Danajon Bank.” ILCP fellow photographer Thomas P. Peschak of South Africa said in a huddle with his fellow photographers and this writer that he’ll try to get the shoots they’ve made on Danajon come out in the National Geographic newswatch and Time magazine, an international magazine that named then President Corazon C. Aquino woman of the year.
“Beginning in June, photographs from Danajon Bank will be shown in public exhibits at aquariums in Chicago, Hong Kong, Manila and London. iLCP and Project Seahorse will also publish a hardcover book about Expedition Danajon Bank. Also, our photographers will share stories from the expedition in National Geographic News Watch and other media outlets. All of these communications efforts will bring increased world attention to this global marine treasure in need of protection.”
Photographers Peschak and Candisani, who is a Brazilian, were accompanied by fellow photographers Claudio Contreras Koob of Mexico and Michael Ready of U. S. A., along with Tyler Stiem of Canada and Dr. Nick Hill of United Kingdom.
Surveys on fish stock in island of Bilangbilangan and nearby islands off this town was also conducted by Project Seahorse volunteers in the persons of Polly Marshall and Hannah Rawnsley, both of London, UK and Carissa Shipman of U.S.A. and their counterpart executive director Angelie Nellas, Hazel Panes, Myrtle Paquibo and Rosemarie Apurado and other volunteers of the PSF.
Following the shoot, the ILCP and PSF met with the media in a press conference in Manila April 15, 2013, presenting what they’ve undertaken from the DDBR area, Nellas said.
Bohol officials led by Gov. Edgar Chatto and his counterparts of the provinces Cebu, Leyte and Southern Leyte and representatives of national government agencies and non-government organizations (NGO) have committed to continue the concerted efforts to save and preserve the Reef —- by forging on May 18, 2012 the Memorandum of Agreement that virtually creates and governs the Danajon Double Barrier Reef Management Council, now being chaired by Chatto. Executive director Atty. Rose-Liza E. Osorio of the Coastal Conservation for Environment Fund (CCEF) that serves as the secretariat.
The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Sec. Jesse Robredo has recently issued Memorandum Circular No. 2012-102 on June 5, 2012, enjoining the local chief executives of the municipalities, cities and provinces to regularly attend the organizational meetings or the technical working groups of the Council.
DDBR is situated at Northern Bohol, southernmost of Camotes Sea. It has an approximate size of 94 km long on the east-west 9 to 25km wide covering about 695 coastal kms. Total area: 214,268 hectares; 3 big reefs: Cabul-an – Caubyan – 14,300 has.; and Dawajon from11 to 23 kms each; Calituban is inner part: Total area – 46,380 hectares.
It covers the coastal towns of Bien-Unido, Buenavista, Calape, Clarin, Inabanga, Getafe, Pres. CPG, Tlaibon, Trinidad, Tubigon, and Ubay, all of Bohol; Cebu — Lapulapu City, Cordova; Leyte — Matalom, Bato, Hilongos, and Hindang, Baybay City; Southern Leyte – Maasin City
Its rich resources include, 40 islands/islets; mangroves, 5,250 has.; seagrass, more than 500 has.; man-made mangrove forest, 1,786 has.; hard coral species, 211 (205 of which are coral reef-building species); 6 seagrass species out of 16 found in the country (2004 Silliman University survey); Four (4) species of seahorse out of 7 thrive in the country found in Danajon, available data said.
Fish (Fish Improved for Sustainable Harvest) project of the report entitled: “The Fisheries of Central Visayas Philippines: Status and Trends” said that the reef covers about 5,250 sq. km. of mangroves along with the largest in Southeast Asia man-made mangrove (Phizophora) forest of 2,000 has. and a side area of 4,750 hectares. (rvo)