Verde Island Passage, Philippines
The Verde Island Passage Corridor occupies more than 1.14 million hectares between the provinces of Batangas, Oriental and Occidental Mindoro, Marinduque and Romblon in the Philippines. Results of a 2005 study (Carpenter and Springer) has dubbed the Verde Passage as the world’s “center of the center of marine shorefish biodiversity,” hosting the greatest number of shorefish species.
A coral survey conducted in Anilao, Balayan Bay, recorded an impressive 319 species and 74 genera of hard corals. More than half the Philippines’ documented fish species as well as many globally threatened species can be found here. Numerous studies in the Verde Passage continue to yield discoveries of species that are new to science, further underscoring the global biological significance of this area.
The Verde Island Passage is a highly productive fishing ground for both traditional and commercial fishers, and where coastal tourism and development is booming. It is a major sea lane with commercial and fishing vessels regularly passing through to reach the international ports of Batangas, Manila, and Subic Bay.
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