27 May 2017

Rescued ‘pawikan’ released in Subic Freeport on World Turtle Day

The Ocean Adventure Marine Theme Park here celebrated World Turtle Day last Tuesday (May 23) by releasing “George,” an Olive Ridley sea turtle that was found by a fisherman in Olongapo City eight years ago.

George was released at the Camayan Beach Resort under the supervision of animal experts from the Ocean Adventure Rescue and Rehabilitation Center (OARRC).

According to OARRC personnel, George was brought to Ocean Adventure in 2010 by Olongapo fisherman Rodrigo Poblete, who found the turtle at a beach when it was still a juvenile that weighed only two kilos.

Poblete kept the sea turtle as a pet for over a year until it eventually outgrew the kiddie pool where it was kept. Then Poblete turned over the sea turtle to the local government unit of Olongapo, which then referred him to the Wildlife In Need (WIN) Rescue Center.

WIN brought George to Ocean Adventure where he was rehabilitated and fed with the proper nourishment, and where veterinarians conducted monthly physical examinations to ensure his health.

And after several months of close monitoring, George was moved to a large natural lagoon where other rescued sea turtles were rehabilitated.

SBMA Administrator Wilma Eisma lauded the effort in saving the sea turtle, pointing out that it “certainly makes a huge difference in the preservation of the pawikan, which are known to lay their eggs in beaches at the Subic Bay Freeport.”

Eisma added that the SBMA has been working hand-in-hand with local government units and private organizations in rescuing endangered animals such as sea turtles.

The OARRC had so far accepted 62 sea turtles that were rescued in the Freeport and various towns of Zambales and Bataan. These included 19 Hawksbill sea turtles, 16 Green Sea turtles, and 27 Olive Ridley sea turtles.(JRR/MPD-SBMA)


“George,” a sea turtle rehabilitated at the Ocean Adventure Rescue and Rehabilitation Center is released to the sea on Tuesday by Ocean Adventure OIC Robert Gonzaga, Community Environment Officer Marife Castillo and SBMA public relation manager Armie Llamas. The release coincided with the celebration of World Turtle Day, which aims to provide awareness for turtles and tortoise and to encourage human involvement for their survival. (AMD/MPD-SBMA)