KIDSTUFF: Seahorses in danger

Frances Ann C. Nolasco (The Freeman) - October 19, 2014 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - Once upon a time there lived two best friends in the deep blue sea. They were seahorses Argie and Thomas. They always went to play near the port where ships dock.

“Hi, Argie! How are you?” Thomas greeted his friend one day. “I’m fine, Thomas,” Argie replied. And, again, they proceeded to their favorite play spot.

“Have you noticed something about our place recently?” Thomas asked.

“Oh yes,” Argie quickly answered. “Our place is getting dirty, and many fishes are getting poisoned; the corals are getting damaged!”

“Right,” Thomas sadly agreed. “But what do you think is the cause of all of these?”

Argie looked away for a while, as if trying to figure it out. “People from the ships throw their garbage to the sea,” he said. “And fishermen throw dynamites into the water.”

As they were talking, they overheard people at the port conversing about a super typhoon coming. “Hear that?!” Argie turned to Thomas, both of them alarmed. “That means we too have to prepare for the big waves.”

The best friends hurried to go home. That night, as they were sleeping underwater, they felt the storm come. The heard the fierce splashing of the waves above, as well as the big sound of thunder. Even the underwater currents have somehow grown unusually strong.

Argie and Thomas got up from their sleep. Instead they rounded up their families and their neighbors, telling everyone to take shelter in the bigger coral reef in case the currents get stronger still. True enough, in the morning they found most of their homes destroyed.

“Look at our homes, Argie. They are destroyed,” Thomas said. “My parents said this had not happened before.”

“Yes. But the storm is not really the reason for this destruction,” Argie analyzed. “It’s the heaps of trash that has accumulated in the water. It slams on the corals every time the waves strike. Without the trash the force of the waves above would not have reached the corals down here.”

“If only people were more careful,” Thomas sighed deeply. “If only they realized that there are creatures living under the sea that get affected by their careless ways.”

“Yeah – if only…” Argie repeated. “If only the fishermen realized that their dynamites have weakened the corals, making it easily break at the first few blows of the waves. If only people realized that their every irresponsible action towards the sea puts all of us underwater in danger.”

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