Breezy Bantayan: More Than a Thousand Mangroves

9:29 AM

In between the towns of Sta. Fe and Bantayan was Obo-ob. It was home for OMAGEICA (Obo-ob Mangrove Garden Integrated Ecotourism and Conservation Association).

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Back in college, I had a subject on sustainable environment because I took BA Development Studies. We were taught how it is important to make our environment sustainable especially in today's situation. I think somewhere along those lessons were about mangroves. Mangroves have different benefits for our environment. First, they can be homes to different marine animals - fishes, crabs, shrimps, sea snakes and molluscs. One hectare of mangroves can actually produce a ton of fish per year! Mangroves protects the shoreline as its roots reduce erosion.

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We paid an entrance fee of Php20.00 to have a tour guide.

We were escorted on a bit rickety bamboo walkway that leads to the thick forest of mangroves.

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I just had to include the dog in the photo 

Before entering, our guide (I sometimes fail at remember names) pulled out a net cage to check if they caught any crabs. They have this mechanism all over the mangrove garden since crabs multiply in the area.

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Find the cage! It was low tide when we visited.
We walked around, touching the branches of mangroves and just enjoying the scenery. This is the first time I've seen them up close.

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Trying my best not to trip or fall

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 We stopped and saw tiny mangrove seedlings which never in my head did I imagine to look like small straight branches.

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Pointing at the seedlings (J's idea!)
Some parts were closed due to damage on the bamboo bridge. Apparently, there was a large group of students who visited the place. There were too much weight on the bridge that caused some bamboos to break. I can just imagine how rowdy kids get during a field trip.


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 At one end was a sign and the location of the first mangrove. It has been cut down as mangrove branches can be used for fish poles, furniture and other things.

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In memory of the first mangrove plantation
We visited the place during low tide so I would love to come back during high tide. Wanted to see some shrimps and crabs but they weren't around to say hello. Maybe when I come back they won't be so shy.

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