Huge pod of dolphins seen in Oriental Mindoro shows rich marine biodiversity

October 10, 2018 - 5:15 PM
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One of the most diverse marine ecosystems in the world is found in the province—the Verde Island Passage. It stretches through the coasts of Batangas, Mindoro, Romblon and Marinduque in 10 kilometers. (Creative Commons/Stock photo)

Social media users were amused when numerous dolphins were spotted in Bulalacao, Oriental Mindoro but the province has long been recognized for hosting dolphin-watching activities

Facebook user Kristina Mangao shared a video of dolphins jumping across the surface of the ocean in Libtong, Bulalacao. According to her, it’s the “first time in (the) history” of Libtong that it has happened.

However, user Daven Edjan shared that he and his companions spotted dolphins while they were headed to Bulalacao Port in 2017.

While it might have been the first time that dolphins were spotted in that area, it’s not a surprise since Oriental Mindoro is also home to Puerto Galera (or “The Bay of Dolphins”) — considered one of the most recognized dolphin-watching spots in the country.

Bulalacao, meanwhile, is enclosed by Bulalacao Bay and Tablas Strait.

The marine life of Oriental Mindoro

One of the most diverse marine ecosystems in the world is found in the province — the Verde Island Passage. It stretches through the coasts of Batangas, Mindoro, Romblon and Marinduque in 10 kilometers.

The passage has been described by the Smithsonian Institute as “the center of the world’s marine biodiversity” due to its high concentration of marine species such as fish, corals, dolphins, sea turtles, humphead wrasses, giant groupers, giant clams, flying fish and luminous plankton.

Diver swimming in a coral reef in Puerto Galera, Oriental Mindoro. (Puerto Galera Government/Released)

The various species of dolphins that can be found in the passage are spotted dolphins, spinner dolphins, bottlenose dolphins, short-finned pilot whales and dwarf sperm whales.

According to Oriental Mindoro Rep. Reynaldo Umali, “The passage is host to spectacular reef formations of more than 300 species of coral and underwater rock canyons that is home to more than half of the worlds’ known shore fish species.”

The Verde Island Passage can be accessed through Puerto Galera.

Last month, local government officials of the provinces surrounding the passage have decided to create a petition for the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization to declare it a World Heritage Site. — Video from Kristina Mangao via Facebook