News Release

Recovery plan for Philippine Crocodiles

24 August 2009
Philippine crocodile being released into Dicatian Lake Photo © Merlijn van Weerd

On 31 July 2009, 50 captive-bred Philippine Crocodiles were released into the wild in Dicatian Lake, Barangay Dicatian, Municipality of Divilacan, Isabela Province, Luzon Island. The Philippine Crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis), which is endemic to the Philippines, is one of the most severely threatened crocodile species in the World.

Listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™, the total population surviving in the wild is estimated at only 100 mature individuals found only in northern Luzon and southwest Mindanao. Philippine Crocodiles are relatively small and pose no danger to humans unless provoked.

The released crocodiles were bred in the Palawan Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Center (PWRCC) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). The Isabela-based Mabuwaya Foundation implemented a community-based crocodile conservation program with funding from the UK-registered Rufford Maurice Laing Foundation. Ten of the crocodiles have been fitted with radio transmitters. Their movements and adaptation will be monitored by the Mabuwaya Foundation and the DENR to gather more scientific information as a basis for future crocodile reintroductions elsewhere.

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