Multiple Olive-Ridley sea turtles have begun to nest as a result of Caltex brand marketer Chevron Philippines, Inc. (CPI)’s San Pascual coastal clean-up during the annual Week of Caring (WOC) held every September.
With two sea turtle nest sightings along the San Pascual coastline to date, CPI has been ramping up efforts to ensure that nesting grounds stay protected at all costs. Guards on duty have gently combed the surface sand over the nesting sites while taking extra care not to disturb the eggs, fenced the areas, and kept the sites safe from tidal waves.
CPI likewise continues to closely monitor two possible nesting sites near the causeway. It already enclosed the sites to prevent natural predators including monitor lizards or “bayawak,” stray cats and dogs, and even rodents from preying and eating the eggs. Guards also vigilantly keep close watch on the possible nesting sites to maintain enclosure integrity. CPI expects the turtle eggs to ripen and the hatchlings to mature and rise to the ground surface within two months.
Guards handling the nesting areas have all undergone Marine Sea Turtle 101 training by the Philippine Global Programme of Action with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Community Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) Protected Area and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB).
The San Pascual nesting activity is the latest since the nesting activity along the Lagnas River shoreline in 2013. A “talisay” tree marks the area where Olive-Ridley sea turtles have laid their eggs.
“We are extremely elated with the success of our recent coastal clean-up, thanks to the continued support of the local community and CPI employees who have exhibited true volunteerism. We are committed towards preserving the Batangas coastal area as a declared marine sanctuary for Olive-Ridley sea turtles, and we will constantly safeguard these eggs, through our strengthened protection efforts,” Peter Morris, CPI Country Chairman, said.
About 200 CPI employees and over 100 town residents and students from San Pascual, Batangas joined the annual coastal clean-up, which removed a total of 514 garbage bags or 2.5 tons of worth of rubbish from the area. The coastal clean-up is the final activity of this year’s five-day WOC program, which included school facilities improvement, road safety education, and art therapy session. This is the ninth edition of the WOC, which advocates volunteerism among CPI employees and business partners.