Mike's Dauin Beach Resort - Using DPVs to cover more survey area

Mike's Dauin Beach Resort

2023 PADI AWARE Grantee



This PADI AWARE Grantee is mapping the population of Green Sea Turtles and the seagrass beds they frequent in Dauin, Philippines, through detailed professional surveys and citizen science images taken by divers.

Mike’s Dauin Beach Resort hopes mapping the population of green sea turtles in Dauin, called Project Pawikan, will be the beginning of an ongoing process of understanding and appreciating the enigmatic animals and the challenges they face.





Project Pawikan will help raise awareness, locally and beyond, of the importance of seagrass bes as Green Turtle foraging grounds, and the need to improve their protection. The Project can inform decision-makers on how to safeguard Dauin's sea turtles for future generations.

The local turtle population recently came to light within marine sanctuaries protecting coral reefs, but the seagrass beds green sea turtles depend upon exist mostly outside the Marine Sanctuaries, and are unmapped. Mike’s Dauin Beach Resort hopes that showing the important role seagrass beds play in hosting this population may lead to greater protections of these invaluable habitats. “We are passionate about protecting them and their habitat, so more people may appreciate these gentle ocean ambassadors,” said Jonathan Anderson, Project Pawikan Officer.

The materials and methodology developed and used by Project Pawikan will be made freely available to anyone who wants to conduct similar fact-finding missions in their locality.

Why are sea turtles and seagrass beds important to study? Sea turtles are an indicator species - a stable, healthy population is often a sign of a healthy environment. While nesting beaches have long been recognised and protected by law, they are often not where the turtles spend most of their lives.  Green Turtles in particular rely on seagrass beds, and may spend years foraging in the same small areas before traveling vast distances to mate and nest.  Project Pawikan aims to reveal if Dauin is a foraging area, and encourage protection of these often unrecognized areas.

For Anderson, protecting these animals is personal. “Over the years, we have seen the same animals again and again, and have come to recognise them through patterns, colours, even a missing fin,” he says.  “Encountering them is like a visit with old friends, and we are honoured to share their home.”



Want to see more of Mike's Dauin Beach Resort in action?

You can follow along with Mike's Dauin Beach Resort and their green turtle mapping project on their websiteInstagramFacebook, or on https://www.padi.com/aware.