Marine Sanctuary

cathedral12.jpg arthur1.jpg twin01.jpg

I came across the Mabini Marine Reserve Ordinance and would like to share what is expected of divers and non-divers alike when visiting Marine Sanctuaries like the Cathedral Rock, Arthur’s Rock and Twin Rocks.

The following are strictly prohibited in a Marine Sanctuary:

  1. Fishing in any form. Marine sanctuary is a “no take zone” (NTZ)
  2. Killing, harassing or harming any marine life
  3. Destruction, vandalism or alterations of natural ecological formations
  4. Jet skiing or wave running
  5. Littering & dumping of wastes
  6. Dropping of boat anchors
  7. More than two (2) dive boats
  8. Check-out dives or refresher dives are not allowed in the sanctuary
  9. “No Ticket – no entry policy” (conservation fee)

Divers and snorkelers are expected to:

  • avoid contact with corals and marine animals at all times
  • take care to secure spare air valves, consoles, pressure gauges to avoid damaging corals
  • maintain good buoyancy control
  • stay off the bottom. Don’t stand or rest on corals
  • use of dive knife, reef hook and poker will be strictly allowed to divemasters only
  • do not feed marine animals. This can interrupt the animal’s feeding and mating habits enough to render imbalance in their normal cycle
  • take nothing, living or dead out of the water, except recent garbage
  • strict usage of mooring buoys
  • to take pictures underwater, divers need advance diving skills/certificate at least Advanced Open Water Level

Outside the above-mentioned sanctuaries is the marine reserve. The Mabini Marine Reserve covers the entire coastline of Barangays San Teodoro and Bagalangit including 700 meters offshore.

The following are regulations to be observed in the Marine Reserve Zone:

  1. Illegal and destructive fishing methods are strictly prohibited
  2. Only traditional fishing methods using hook & line, 3 cm mesh nets, spear fishing without compressor/scuba, “salok” for catching “dulong” and traps shall be allowed within the marine reserve.
  3. Littering & dumping of wastes are banned.

Penalty ranges from a fine of Php 1,500 to Php 3,500 or imprisonment of no less than 3 to 6 months for first offense to confiscation of illegally caught fish, vessels & equipments for second offense.

To view a copy of the ordinance please click on this LINK.

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