Some 152 critically endangered Hawksbill turtle hatchlings were released to their natural habitat along the coastline of Aboitiz Cleanergy Park in Punta Dumalag, Matina Aplaya, Davao city that was led by Vice President Sara Duterte.

Vice President Sara Duterte led the releasing of 152 critically endangered Hawksbill Turtle hatchlings to their natural habitat along the coastline of Aboitiz Cleanergy Park in Punta Dumalag, Matina Aplaya.

“Karamihan ng mga adult turtles na nakukuha natin sa dagat ay meron silang mga problema dahil nakakakain sila ng mga plastic. Kaya importante na maintindihan ng mga bata ang life cycle ng turtles at gaano kahirap sila mabuhay,” Duterte said.

Duterte emphasized the importance of their activity to help enlighten the children and the community on how to make a stand in environmental preservation.

Fermin Edillon, Head of Reputation Department of Davao Light and Power Company, said only about one in 1,000 hatchlings survive to adulthood. Hatchlings die of dehydration if they failed to make it to the ocean fast enough.

Edillon also said the hatchlings came from eggs laid by a Hawksbill turtle that was trapped and rescued in the same coastline in 2017.

He said the turtle returned to lay eggs in 2021 and this year. The Aboitiz Cleanergy Park, he said, secured the area to ensure that the eggs are safe after the mother turtle left.

Launched in 2014, the Aboitiz Cleanergy Park is an eight-hectare ecological preserve and biodiversity conservation site managed by AboitizPower subsidiary Davao Light and the Aboitiz Foundation, Inc.

It has become home to critically endangered pawikan species like the Hawksbill turtle, Green Sea turtle, and Olive Ridley turtle. It is also a haven for endemic migratory birds and other marine species.

The Hawksbill turtle is one of the five species that can be found in the tropical oceans of the Philippines. It is held in high regard due to its distinct amber, yellow, black and brown shell. Its narrow head, beak-like jaws and overlapping scutes or scales are its dominant features, to which its name was derived from.