The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

Philippine Crocodiles at Siargao’s Paghungawan Marsh

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Today we went to Paghungawan Marsh to watch the release into the wild of twenty-nine critically endangered Philippine crocodiles.

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

 

Located just 4.5 kilometers south of the fishing port of Pilar, Paghungawan Marsh is home to a wild population of the the Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis).

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

Twenty-nine of these small freshwater crocodiles were brought to Siargao over the last few days from Davao.

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

A small crowd gathered on the viewing platform over Paghungawan Marsh to watch the release of these crocodiles which are endemic to the Philippines.

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

While small compared to the saltwater crocodile (also to be found on Siargao)  proper precautions were taken for safe handling.

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

Growing only to around three meters these crocodiles are much smaller than their more abundant cousins the saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

 

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.
WildSiargao team member Bryllane standing with the mayor of Pilar and preparing to release a crocodile.

 

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

 

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

 

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

Prior to release the tape was of course removed from the mouths of the crocs:

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

Many visitors on hand had the chance to release a Philippine crocodile into the wild.

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

And here’s a crocodile being given its freedom in the freshwater of Paghungawan Marsh:

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

It wasn’t long before we were able to see these Philippine crocodiles swimming freely in their new home…

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

On your next rip to Siargao be sure to stop by Paghungawan Marsh in the Municipality of Pilar and hopefully you can catch a glimpse of these freshwater Philippine crocodiles!

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) at Paghungawan Marsh in Pilar, Siargao.

 

After a hot afternoon watching the crocodile release we headed just a few kilometers down the road for a picnic and a swim at Tayangban Cave Pool.

 

 

Note: It was brought to our attention that the crocodile in Jaboy that we wrote about earlier is being taken to Palawan.

 


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