DENR lends 5 crocodiles  to Manila Ocean Park
- Katherine Adraneda () - August 27, 2008 - 12:00am

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) loaned five juvenile freshwater crocodiles (Crocodylus mindorensis) to a privately owned park in Manila.

DENR Secretary Lito Atienza led the ceremonial release of the five female freshwater crocodiles at the Manila Ocean Park, as well as the signing of the memorandum of agreement (MOA) for the turnover of the custody of the animal species to China Oceana Philippines Inc., the company that operates the park.

“The appearance of the freshwater crocodiles at the park will give visitors a chance to see one of the only two crocodile species in the country (the other being the saltwater crocodile or Crocodylus porosus),” Atienza said.

According to the DENR chief, seeing the crocodiles may inspire the public to help conserve these animals, which were bred in captivity at the Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Center in Puerto Princesa City.

Atienza likewise expressed confidence that the Manila Ocean Park will take care of the crocodiles well and disseminate information about its importance in the country’s biodiversity.

Under the MOA signed by Atienza and China Oceana Philippines president and CEO Lim Chee Yong, the five crocodiles would be loaned by the DENR to the company for three years.

Personnel from the crocodile farm in Palawan will train park employees to ensure proper handling of the animals, while Manila Ocean Park officials will give DENR quarterly reports on the status and condition of the loaned animals.

Manila Ocean Park will also provide the crocodile farm P30,000 yearly to support conservation and other research activities on crocodiles.

ATIENZA ATIENZA AND CHINA OCEANA CHINA OCEANA PHILIPPINES INC PARK PLACE PLACENAME PLACETYPE
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