Originally posted on GMA News Online by BERNADETTE A. PARCO
In the last five years marine scientists from the University of the Philippines – Diliman recorded the highest frequency of strandings in the country – 61 percent or 438 of 713 events recorded in the last 12 years.
While these strandings were alarming, they came with a silver lining.
There are no wide scale field surveys of Philippine marine mammals, but these strandings provided similar data, which validated the diversity of marine species and their potential distribution in the country. This information could be vital in conservation efforts.
For example, according to a study entitled “The Philippine Marine Mammal Strandings from 2005 to 2016”, the strandings proved the presence of 29 species of marine mammals – 28 cetaceans or dolphins, whales; and one sirenian or sea cow.