DENR awards winning photos in Month of the Ocean celebration
(The Philippine Star) - July 8, 2012 - 12:00am

Manila, Philippines - The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) concluded the celebration of May as Month of the Ocean with the awarding of the winning photos of its first Coastal and Marine Biodiversity Photo Contest.

 At the same time, a brochure entitled, “The 5 Most Threatened Marine Wildlife in the Philippines” authored by Dr. A. A. Yaptinchay, director of Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines or MWWP, was also launched during the event held last week at the DENR office in Quezon City.

 Executive director Jacob Meimban, Jr. of the Coastal and Marine Management Office (CMMO) of the Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB) said that there were 117 entries for the contest. The entries were later trimmed down to 12, then to five, out of which the top three were selected. 

The top prize package of a Luminox Scott Cassell diver’s watch, a Canon photo printer and Canon diary went to Jun Lao for his over-under photo of a local boy swimming under an outrigger, which Lao said was taken in Romblon.

 An over-under photo is a split photo where the top half shows a scene above water while the bottom half shows an underwater scene. 

Network of Underwater Digital Imagers (NUDI) president Jan Acosta, who had joined officials of the DENR as member of the panel of judges, said that Lao’s picture was chosen for its excellent technical quality and reflection of the contest theme. 

The second and third prizes went to Corey Froelich and Mar Jerie Meacham, respectively, who were out of the country for the awarding ceremony. For his close-up frontal picture of a pawikan (or sea turtle), Froelich won a Sony Cybershot camera and Canon photo printer. Meacham, on the other hand, won a Canon printer/copier/scanner machine for her photo of a family of clownfish nestled among soft corals. 

Launched on May 2, 2012, the photo competition was among the major activities conducted by the  DENR-PAWB to celebrate May as the “Month of the Ocean” with the theme, “Buhay Dagat, Buhay Natin.” The photo contest was sponsored by NUDI, Swiss watch brand Luminox, and imaging company Canon Philippines.  

The awarding ceremony also saw the launching of a new brochure by Dr. Yaptinchay, entitled “The 5 Most Threatened Marine Wildlife in the Philippines.” Yaptinchay, director of Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines or MWWP, a marine conservation partner of the DENR, said that the animals were named in consideration of their status as highly threatened species.

Featured in the brochure are the Irrawaddy dolphin, the hawksbill turtle, and the dugong for their critically endangered status, while the manta ray and thresher shark as vulnerable species. The brochure is in full color and contains information on their known habitats, threats, and existing conservation efforts. 

Yaptinchay said he made the brochure “to heighten awareness among more people regarding the need to conserve these species and their habitats.” 

BUHAY DAGAT BUHAY NATIN CANON PHILIPPINES COASTAL AND MARINE BIODIVERSITY PHOTO CONTEST MARINE WILDLIFE WATCH OF THE PHILIPPINES MONTH OF THE OCEAN MOST THREATENED MARINE WILDLIFE PHOTO YAPTINCHAY
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