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Assessment of the Diversity of Macro Aquatic Species in Amburayan River in Kapangan, Benguet in the Philippines

DOI: 10.4236/ojms.2018.83018, PP. 323-354

Keywords: Assessment Study, Macro Aquatic Species, River System, The Philippines

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Abstract:

Little is known about the diversity and status of endemic freshwater fishes which are valuable bio-indicators of ecosystem health and an integral part of a country’s natural heritage. Some of the less studied areas in the Philippines are the river systems in the Cordillera which are equally important as that of the other freshwater systems in the country. Amburayan River in Kapangan, Benguet is one of the rivers in the said region. Thus assessment study of the diversity of macro aquatic species was conducted to provide a baseline data in the formulation of resource management strategies and polices. By using a mixture of qualitative and quantitative research methods, the study determined and identified the presence of macro species in the study area. It applied the National Stock Assessment Program (NSAP) procedures in the gathering of samples while identification and determination of fish stocks were done by morphometric analysis of the catch with the help of available references and assistance of experts. This is later verified through submission of samples to the National Fisheries Research Development Institute (NFRDI) as part of the NSAP areas for DNA analysis. The measurement of the impacts of human activities to the river systems was done using the checklist method by Smith and Smith. The study found that there is low biodiversity of macro aquatic species in the area because of the presence of introduced species, illegal fishing practices, quarrying and mining activities. There are also no indigenous or traditional management measures conducted to conserve the river ecosystem biodiversity. The study recommended that similar study be done in other areas of the river and that the government agencies to undertake fisheries programs which would regulate the exploitation and utilization and allow regeneration of macro aquatic species in the river system.

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