Working with local fishing communities to protect dugongs in the Philippines

On Valentines Day 2013, we travelled to the remote Barangay New Quezon in Busuanga to run a workshop with local fisherfolk to discuss dugongs, their conservation and how local communities can get involved.

The workshop was a great success, with 35 male and female participants who talked with us about the threats to dugongs such as destructive fishing, entanglement in nets and boat collisions. ¬†Everyone involved agreed on the urgent need to protect the dugong, a regular visitor to their barangay’s waters.

We also introduced and implemented our local community dugong sighting programme, where local fishers record all sightings of dugong on a large map, displayed prominently in the barangay.  We hope that by fully involving local people in dugong conservation, we can ensure a future for this incredible species in Palawan.