Malhiao, Cebu Island

June 2011

Conservation benefit: Protection of a 180-acre mangrove area for 15 years
Community benefit: Construction of a boardwalk and viewing deck

Malhiao is one of 29 barangays (villages) in the municipality of Badian in the Philippines province of Cebu. Mangrove trees used to grow abundantly along the Tañon Strait coastline where Badian is located, but people have cut them for building material, food, and fuel. Lately, the establishment of fish ponds has also contributed to the depletion of mangrove areas.

In Barangay Malhiao, 180 acres of thick mangrove forest remain. (Three mangrove species have been recorded in the area: bakawan, bungalon/piapi, and tangal. Community members have agreed to declare the whole mangrove area in their jurisdiction as a no-take zone. They have set up an organization, the Malhiao Resource Management Multi-Purpose Cooperative, to protect the mangrove forest. The barangay’s fisherfolk organizations are also playing a part. They will provide information to community residents on the importance of mangroves and the effects of cutting them, plant mangroves, conduct coastal clean-ups, and guard against poachers.

The organization is keen to promote nature tourism in the mangrove area so that the community will derive some economic benefit from it. They plan to build a tourist information center, boardwalk, viewing deck, guardhouse, and mangrove nursery. They have secured funding for the tourist information center, guardhouse, and nursery. Seacology is providing funds, through the Tambuyog Development Center, to build a boardwalk and viewing deck.

Project Updates
June 2012
Despite the fact that construction began only last September due to heavy rains in the region, this project is almost done, with partner organization Tambuyog projecting the finish date to be...
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