Philippines: Butchered Baby Whale Shark Found

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Butchered baby butanding found on Antique beach

A brutally killed baby whale shark was found in Barangay Oloc, Laua-an, Antique over the weekend.
The year-and-a-half-old whale shark, locally referred to as a butanding, was stabbed six times before its tail was cut off, according to a report in GMA News' “24 Oras" on Monday.
Lauan-an Mayor Aber Baladiay said that the butanding was alive when it was captured. “Kaso dahil sa may ibang intensyon ang mga tumulong sa butanding, kaya nila pinutulan ng buntot para hindi makapamuwersa at dinala dito sa Brgy. Oloc," he said in Hiligaynon.
Local authorities have apprehended the owner of the outrigger or bangka that was used to catch the butanding. The authorities threatened to sue him if does not reveal the identity of those who had caught the whale shark.

Last year, the Arroyo administration issued an administrative order for government agencies and local government units to strengthen protection efforts to protect the animal [] after a whale shark was killed in Tingloy, Batangas.

The World Wildlife Fund also condemned the Tingloy incident where the whale shark’s fins were sliced off. []

The butanding is classified by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as a vulnerable species and is protected by Republic Act 8550 and the Fisheries Administrative Order 193.

The possession or slaughter of whale sharks in the Philippines is punishable by four years in jail, a maximum fine of P10,000 and the cancellation of the violator’s fishing license.

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