Engaging the Youth in Wetland Conservation

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Engaging the Youth in Wetland Conservation

2019 04

 

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources has found an ally in the conservation of the Buguey Wetlands following the engagement recently of the youth in World Wetlands Day.

These young partners are elementary and high school students residing near the Buguey Wetlands.

The students learned the importance and benefits of wetlands through the Buguey Wetlands Summit held on Feb. 2, this year in the said town. The Summit highlighted the celebration of the World Wetlands Day.

With the theme, “Wetlands and climate change,” the participants from Minanga Elementary School, Mala Weste Elementary School, Leron Elementary School, Centro West Elementary School, Buguey Central Elementary School, San Isidro Elementary School, Sta. Maria Primary and Licerio Antiporda Senior National High School also learned the roles of wetlands in mitigating the effects of climate change.

The students participated in different interactive lectures and activities which allowed them to tour in some areas within the wetlands.

In the first station, the students experienced bird watching and were asked to identify the migratory birds visiting the area. The participants identified five species, namely; Black-winged Stilt, Intermediate Egret, Great Egret, Grey Heron and Purple Heron.

The students learned the common species of mangroves and its parts and functions in the second station. They identified seven species in the area which include Bakawan Lalaki, Bakawan Babae, Pagatpat, Pototan, Saging-saging, Nipa and Bungalon or Api-api.

The students also learned the functions of wetlands and the interconnection of natural resources through find-a-word and memory games in the last two stations.

In his message, Buguey Sangguniang Bayan Member Adolfo Miranda Jr. appealed to the participants to actively join in conserving the Buguey Wetlands as the survival of the migratory birds and the source of income of the locals depend on it.

Prior to the Summit, a series of Dalaw Turo were conducted in schools to widen the students’ knowledge about wetlands. Campaign materials like pamphlets, game cards, shirts and hats were also given to the students and their teachers.

The Summit is part of the Buguey Wetlands Awareness Campaign (BWAn) Project, a grant given to the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office of Cagayan with Community Environment and Natural Resources Office of Aparri and Local Government Unit of Buguey as implementers. It aims to provide supplemental activities for the conservation and development of the environment and is funded by Ramsar Regional Center-East Asia.

BWAn Project Lead Emerlynn Daliong encouraged the students to share their learnings during the Summit to their family and friends to build a bigger and stronger network in wetlands protection and preservation.

Buguey Wetlands with an approximate area of 500 hectares cover about 80 percent of the total area of the said municipality. These wetlands are composed of coastal lagoons, freshwater marshes, mangrove swamps, mudflats, with some fish, crab and shrimp ponds, and large rice paddies.

World Wetlands Day is celebrated every 2nd day of February to raise public awareness about the importance and value of wetlands.#