Considered as one of the largest freshwater catch basin in the Philippine wetlands, Agusan Marshland as mentioned in Wikipedia, has an estimated area of 15 thousand hectares and is composed of 49% freshwater rainforest, 14% secondary scrub, 10% covers pools, lakes and small rivers, herbaceous swamps is 7%, rice fields area and other agricultural land mass is 6%, and settlements by a small community is composed in 6% area. This freshwater area has been a home of many wildlife that includes birds, insects, reptiles. During the rainy season, ducks from different origins comes to Agusan Marsh to nest. And during the dry season, thousands of birds from as far as Russia and China come in to escape the winter winds of the Northern Asia.
It is nothing new that as reptiles are concern, crocodiles also transit from other places towards the Agusan Marsh. Before “Lolong”, the largest crocodile was captured in the environment; crocodiles have been hunted in the marshland for food by the local poachers. A seventeen foot (17ft) crocodile was once trapped by the locals. But before the environmentalist officials came, the reptile was already skinned for roasting. The crocodile skull has been displayed at one of the barangay office located in Agusan Marsh, but now, due to restriction, the skull is kept from outsiders. The meat tastes like chicken and is mostly eaten by roasting. Some says that if only Captain Hook knows that the crocodile meat tastes like heaven, he should have hunted down the reptile as well.
Humans are the greatest threat of the Agusan Marsh. The threat ranges from electrical fishing to using small eyed nets. Some fishers also make use of chemicals to catch various freshwater fishes as huge as 4 kilograms each. The local community population does not exceeds 100 people but are living on a floating houses which largely rely on catching fish as main source of income.
Traditionally, the Agusan Marsh area has only two seasons: the wet season and the very wet season. The wet season is experienced from March to August. The very wet season is during September to February. During the very wet season, the community around the Agusan Marsh experienced severe flooding and all the water is contained in the Agusan Marsh area. Water level rises as high as 100 ft at the center basin of the area. This makes the marshland a view of total water extended from east to west.
Some oil explorations were conducted in the area. It was so found out that a metallic tube of 20 ft long and 1 inch diameter was pushed towards the bottom of about 16 feet of the marshland area. After awhile, a flame was lit over the opening of the remaining tube which proves that other than fossil fuels available in the area, natural gas is also present.
Reservation is the primary concern of the government to help preserve the environment of vast natural resources. Laws are enacted, local ordinance are initiated to affect the total governance of the Agusan Marsh as Wildlife Sanctuary.