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Rapid Riparian Assessment of Selected Critical Rivers in Misamis Oriental, Philippines

Author(s): Rose Angelica L. Amper, George R. Puno, Einstine M. Opiso, Rena Christina C. Puno

Published: 18 Oct 2021
Volume: 25 (2021) Issue 1, Page: 26, Category: Natural Science,
DOI:


Abstract

Due to threats of agricultural expansion and urbanization, riparian areas of rivers are on the brink of deterioration impacting their ecological functions such as the attenuation of flood disasters. In the urbanizing cities and municipalities of El Salvador, Gingoog and Jasaan in Misamis Oriental in southern Philippines, rivers are considered critical due to its high risk to flooding occurrence. In order to implement appropriate river management practices in sustaining its ecological services, understanding the rivers’ riparian status is necessary. Hence, this study was conducted to evaluate the current status of Molugan, Solana and Odiongan rivers riparian condition. Using a check list as a guide, abiotic and biotic components of the upstream, midstream and downstream sites of the rivers were rated and evaluated. Other factors such as land use and land cover pattern, population density, stream order and slope were also taken to account in the assessment. Results showed that all rivers are still in the sub-optimal conditions implied with minimal disturbance and deterioration. However of the three rivers, Odiongan was with the least ideal general riparian habitat condition which may be attributed to the river’s larger size and accessibility to disturbance. Regardless of the good results, conscious regulation for the expansion of agricultural cultivation especially in the upstream areas of the watersheds is still recommended. In addition, appropriate land use zoning must be implemented giving emphasis on the establishment of appropriate riparian vegetation buffer widths and integrating natural conservation strategies.


Keyword(s): abiotic component biotic component land cover/land use riparian rivers


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