National Museum tasked to preserve ‘Lolong’
Rhodina Villanueva (The Philippine Star) - March 3, 2013 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The National Museum is now directly coordinating with the Bunawan municipal government in Agusan del Sur concerning the remains of crocodile “Lolong,” which will be subjected to taxidermy, according to the Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB).

PAWB director Theresa Mundita Lim said they are leaving it up to the National Museum since it has the authority over the preservation of animals of national importance.

“Officials of the National Museum will be the ones coordinating or negotiating with Bunawan Mayor Edwin Elorde regarding plans to preserve the skin and skeleton of Lolong,” Lim said.

She added that the National Museum and Elorde will have to agree on where Lolong will be put on display.

Earlier, the PAWB said pneumonia from fungal infection caused Lolong’s death.

Lim said fungus infected Lolong’s lungs and stress aggravated the problem after it was taken out of the Agusan Marsh.

“Even before Lolong’s capture, it was already not feeling well, and taking the crocodile from its natural habitat to a new home made its condition worse,” she said.

The fungal infection made breathing difficult for Lolong and affected its heart, leading to congestive heart failure.

Citing the histopathological report, Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon Paje said Lolong died of chronic pneumonia complicated by multiple organ failure.

He said the histopathology done on tissue samples taken from Lolong’s lungs, heart, liver, kidney and gastrointestinal tract confirmed the initial findings that the giant reptile had died of pneumonia and cardiac arrest.

Paje added the post-mortem findings indicated that Lolong’s massive size and captivity had both taken their toll on the crocodile’s overall health.

“Lolong’s death would serve as an important reference as we review management and husbandry practices and ensure that we provide the appropriate environment for all animals in captivity,” he said.

AGUSAN AGUSAN MARSH BUNAWAN MAYOR EDWIN ELORDE ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES SECRETARY RAMON PAJE LOLONG NATIONAL MUSEUM NATIONAL MUSEUM AND ELORDE OFFICIALS OF THE NATIONAL MUSEUM PROTECTED AREAS AND WILDLIFE BUREAU THERESA MUNDITA LIM
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