An orphaned dugong (sea cow) calf has died at a facility in Busuanga, Palawan, despite a week-long intensive care last week.
Named “Bughaw”, he was first found stranded on a beach in Barangay Bogtong. Volunteer veterinarians tried to help Bughaw get his health back by giving him the necessary care and vitamins he needed.
Bughaw was kept in a new pen and the veterinarians have already prepared refrigerated milk for his supposedly transfer earlier this week, but the calf did not make it.
“Ang sabi ng doctor marami na siyempreng factors… after necropsy nakita na bloated [si Bughaw]. ‘Yon nga hindi na siya nakaka-dumi, may constipation, tapos kulang na rin siguro ‘yong nutrients na nakukuha niya,” Reynante Ramilo, Busuanga-based Community Centered Conservation (C3) Philippines program coordinator, has told Palawan News.
Considered as a critically endangered species in the Philippines, Ramilo said they planned on getting Bughaw adopted by another dugong mother, but the calf did not make it longer than they have expected.
“Ang tinitingnan na lang naming sa C3 Philippines, ‘yon din ang sabi ng vet, ay makatulong ‘yong mga datos na nakuha doon sa baby dugong na in case na may mangyari ulit hindi lang sa Palawan kundi sa buong Pilipinas ay ma-improve ‘yong mga natutuhan nila ditto sa case ni Bughaw,” Ramilo stated.
Ramilo said they hope to retrieve Bughaw’s bones to display it for educational purposes, but they will have to ask permission first from the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development.