28-29 October 2016, San Juan, La Union. During the opening of surf season in San Juan, La Union “surfing capital of the North”, Urbiz Garden Bed & Breakfast – represented by Tina Antonio (owner) – invited FEED to partake in supporting the protection of Philippine sea turtles (Filipino/Tagalog: Pawikan) at the Pawikan Info Centre hosted at her B&B and at El Union Café, with materials and guidance from the Science of Identity Foundation (SIFcare) – Coastal Underwater Resource Management Actions (CURMA).“The beach in San Juan La Union has been the most active nesting area and an important homeland for Olive Ridley sea turtles for many years. Olive Ridley is listed as endangered which means they face a very high risk of extinction. Every year, CURMA volunteers come together to make sure that baby turtles hatch and make their way to the open sea. As soon as nesting season begins, CURMA volunteers meet at 2 am every morning to patrol the coastal stretch of San Juan, searching for sea turtle egg chambers. They also make sure that rules of conduct are being observed when a nest is found.” (Source: SIFcare)
Meet the Latest SIFcare-CURMA & FEED Supporters
CURMA or Coastal Underwater Resource Management Actions is a marine turtle conservation program that protects an endangered keystone species from poachers and other predators. Volunteers patrol the coastline and secure turtle nests from dangers together with other activities to help preserve marine life and the environment as a whole.
- Beach Patrol. This activity requires a patrolling training and workshop for volunteers willing to walk along the coastline daily from 3 AM to 5 AM or depending on the distance of the coast patrolled to search for eggs and nests. It commences in September and ends in March of the next year.
- Hatchery Management. This involves the protection of eggs by transferring them into the CURMA hatchery. Specific sites are assigned for hatchery and fenced to keep dogs and crabs from digging the eggs transferred. The incubation of the eggs usually take 40-70 days.
- Pawikan Release. This is the highlight of CURMA, which is what most people look forward to – the Pawikan (Marine Turtle) releasing. Pawikan hatchlings who have come out of their nests, are released from the hatchery and guided through the shore to the sea.
- Coastal Clean-up. Volunteers conduct coastal clean-up every month, during the annual International Coastal Clean-up Day, and after holidays usually along beaches and rivers to help prevent polluting the seas and harm marine life.
- Information & Education Campaign. We also conduct seminars, educational forums and organize river trekking activities so volunteers can witness the connection between the mountains and the oceans (reef-ridge approach). CURMA also promotes other advocacies, like the “No Plastic” campaign because plastics kill many marine creatures, and share simple ways people can help like making sure trash goes to bins to keep the environment clean.
For 5 years now, CURMA has been actively protecting sea turtle nests along the shores of San Juan with great success, but every year, new threats to the survival of sea turtles mount due to global warming, coupled with human interference such as marine pollution. To combat poaching, more volunteer effort is always welcome.
Join CURMA volunteers as they prepare to welcome these gentle creatures of the sea for another season!
Interested individuals and groups may contact SIFCare through firstname.lastname@example.org.”
For more information on volunteering with CURMA/SIFcare, contact:
Unit UG 35, 146 Alfaro Place,
L.P. Leviste Street, Salcedo Village,
Makati City 1227, Philippines
Phone +632 887 2422 Mobile +63917 367 3535 Email email@example.com
Monday to Friday: 1.00pm – 6.00pm
2nd Floor Lim-Magtajas Building,
CPG Avenue, Tagbilaran City, Bohol,
347 Sta Rosa de Lima Street,
Ili Norte, San Juan,
La Union 2514, Philippines
For more information from FEED, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org