Biodiversity in Philippines (PHL)
  FishBase Complete Literature Reference
Species Families Species Families
Marine 8257 873 No 2500 19 % Temereva, E.N. and V.V. Malakhov, 2001
Freshwater 299 61 No 330 Kottelat, M. and T. Whitten, 1996
Total 8551 928 No
Ref.   Kottelat, M. and T. Whitten, 1996
Conservation There is great biodiversity in the Philippines, including more than 9,000 species of plants, of which an estimated 43 per cent are unique to the country. Deforestation has reduced the amount of forest covering the land to about 46 per cent (1993), with consequent losses to biodiversity, soil erosion, siltation, and flooding. Logging, an increasing population, upland migration, and agricultural pressures have mainly been responsible. Since Herre's 1924 account on the freshwater fishes of the Phillipines very few recent studies have become available. The following information is to be sought: - Existence of conservation plans; - Information on major aquatic habitats or sites within the country; - Current major threats to species; - Future potential threats to species; - Contact(s) for further information.
Geography and Climate The 7,100 Philippine islands, of volcanic origin, are the summits of a partly submerged mountain mass, and all are mountainous. Earthquakes are fairly common in the islands, which include about 20 active volcanoes. The larger islands, particularly Luzon and Mindanao, have a more diversified topography, with broad plains and level, fertile valleys in the interior. In northern Luzon, the valley of the Cagayan River is a plain surrounded by the mountains of the Sierra Madre on the east, the Cordillera Central on the west, and the Caraballo Mountains on the south. To the south of the Caraballo Mountains is the Central Luzon Valley, which extends from Lingayen Gulf to Manila Bay, and Laguna de Bay, the largest lake of Luzon. The plain is drained by the Agno River in the north and by the Pampanga River in the south.The Zambales Mountains are located on the southwest coast. Luzon has a narrow, mountainous extension to the southeast called the Caramoan Peninsula. On Mindanao, the largest island of the Philippines after Luzon, the Diuata Mountains border the Pacific coast, and west of them lies the valley of the Agusan River. In southwestern Mindanao is a large lowland area, the valley of Mindanao. The Philippine Islands are within the tropics and have a mean annual temperature of about 27°C. Interior valleys and leeward sides of islands are warmer than mountain slopes and peaks and windward sides of islands. Rainfall averages about 2,030 millimeters a year in the lowlands. In most of the Philippine Islands, the rainy season occurs during the summer monsoon, from May to November, when the wind blows from the southwest. The dry season occurs during the winter monsoon, from December to April, when the wind blows from the northeast. From June to October, the Philippine Islands are sometimes struck by typhoons, which occasionally cause great damage.

Ref.  Microsoft, 1996
Hydrography The principal islands of the Philippines are crossed by large rivers, some of which are navigable. The longest river on Luzon is the Cagayan; other important rivers on the island include the Chico, Abra, Pampanga, and Bicol. The Mindanao and the Agusan are the principal rivers of Mindanao. Lake Lanao on Mindanao is noteworthy for its species flocks of some @Puntius@ species.

Ref.  Kottelat, M. and T. Whitten, 1996
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