Cadlao Island, a popular tourism site in El Nido, is being eyed by protected area officials to be developed as a new community-based tourism site (CBST).
PPSRNP park superintendent Beth Maclang said in an interview on Tuesday that the team with the Protected Area Management Office (PAMO) El Nido-Taytay Managed Resource Protected Area (ENTMRPA), did a survey on what types of insects, animals, trees, and plants were present in the area. Maclang explained that this type of assessment is fundamental to CBST creation to identify what needs to be developed in the area.
“Nagset-up sila ng mga nets and traps at iniwan doon overnight para makita kung anong klaseng mga wildlife ang makikita doon. Nagkaroon din ng tree identification, pati na rin ang pag-identify ng mga tunog ng ibon,” she said.
Recently, staff from the Puerto Princesa Subterranean National Park (PPSRNP) conducted a series of biodiversity assessments in the island’s hiking trail to determine its tourism viability and replicate tourism practices being done in the Underground River.
“Important ang biodiversity and geophysical assessment sa PROPOSED trail. Una, makikita kung ano ang maapektuhan na mga wildlife sa area. Conservation-wise, para din malaman kung ano ang mga wildlife na makikita doon para sa mga bibisita SA SITE,” she added.
The assessment was also done at the of the Malapaya Foundation, Inc. (MFI) in coordination with the PAMO-ENTMRPA. According to Maclang, the trail is currently under the management of the PAMO, since Cadlao Island is located inside a marine protected area (MPA), but will eventually be managed by the barangay.
“Ang magma-manage talaga ng CBST, para sa eco-friendly trail, if may fees, and needed maintenance, ay sa Barangay Buena Suerte Association, under supervision ng PAMO-ENTMRPA,” she explained.
Maclang added that aside from the assessment, the PPSRNP team agreed that there would be regular sharing of knowledge between them and their partners, especially when the site transitions into a CBST.