BUTUAN City- The Philippine Coast Guard in Surigao del Sur confirmed the presence of salt water crocodiles along coast of Barangay Danipas, actually part of Bislig Bay, in Bislig City in Surigao del Sur province.
Last month, a medium-sized saltwater crocodile was seen by fishermen and coastline residents at Pier 1, PICOP Wharf also in Bislig City.
Last July 6, on board PCG boat, Coast Guard Bislig City personnel headed by STACOM Seaman First officer Ortilla conducted monitoring surveillance operations and found two saltwater crocodiles in different locations near shores of Barangay Danipas.
PCG-Bislig City Station Commander Jerome Ortilla of Philippine Coast Guard Bislig City confirmed the presence of the saltwater crocodile, saying they themselves personally saw the crocodile and took video footage of it last July 6 while conducting patrol surveillance in the vicinity.
The presence of the saltwater crocodile whose scientific name Crocodylus porosus alarmed residents in the area especially those living along shorelines of Bislig City Bay and at the Bislig Port. This prompted Coast Guard office in Bislig City to declare the area temporarily off-limits for human swimming. Saltwater crocodiles are said to be the most dangerous as it attacks humans if surprised or their habitat is disturbed.
Said species of crocodile may reach to a length of 8 meters to 10 meters long and said to be the largest among Crocodilians or the largest reptile in the World.
” We suspect, not only one saltwater crocodile present in that area but as to how many, that we don’t know. That’s why we are temporarily setting the area off-limits for swimming” Ortilla added.
Meanwhile, the local government unit of Bislig City claimed it is doing its best to have said crocodile placed in safer area.
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PCG’s Ortilla said they are still awaiting advise or action from DENR-Caraga regional office particularly from the regional Wildlife office on what is to be done with the Saltwater crocodile.
“ As of now, no personnel yet from the Wildlife Office came in to rescue the saltwater crocodile and bring it to a safer place away from the public. We admit it endangers human lives, but we appeal to residents living along seashores in Bislig Bay especially near Bislig PICOP Port where it was first spotted not to touch, harm, or try to catch the reptile,” Ortilla concludes.
Lolong, the largest crocodile ever measured from snout-to-tail. (6.17 meters/20 feet 3 in) (6.17 meters) and weighed 2,370 lbs (1,075 kg) was found in Agusan Marsh in Bunawan, Agusan del Sur, also part of the Caraga region, where lies Bislig City, Surigao del Sur province.
PHOTO CAPTION: Personnel of Philippine Coast Guard Station Bislig City aboard PCG boat continue to conduct monitoring on the presence of saltwater crocodile at vicinity waters of Pier 1, PICOP wharf, Bislig City.
On or about 060830H July 6, 2018, the team sighted the saltwater crocodile roaming around the vicinity waters of Danipas, Bislig City.
Likewise, the Coast Guard Station Bislig strictly discourages everyone to go on swimming and conduct fishing within the vicinity water off Danipas and Picop Pier 1. (Photos all courtesy of Philippine Coast Guard – Bislig City )