Managing UNESCO-designated sites during the pandemic - reports from the field: Tubbataha Reef World Heritage site, the Philippines

Credit: FB Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park @tubbatahareefsnp

Around the world, UNESCO-designated sites – World Heritage sites, Biosphere Reserves and UNESCO Global Geoparks – protect and manage the world’s most special places. The COVID-19 pandemic affects people, wildlife and their environment in different ways.

The Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park – a natural World Heritage site – is located in the Sulu Sea in the Philippines. It protects an area of almost 100,000 hectares of high quality marine habitats containing three atolls and a large area of deep sea. The property is home to a great diversity of marine life. Its ecosystems support over 350 species of coral and almost 500 species of fish. Amid the pandemic of COVID-19, the park has been closed since the beginning of March 2020 which cutting off one of the revenues of the park. Nevertheless, marine park rangers are still continuing the safeguarding of the park.

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