On All Things Turtles

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Hello!

Dumbork did not have the chance to spend the last weekend under the sun — the sky was gloomy, and the brief bursts of sunlight makes it harder for her to stay in one place (she likes to roam around). However, I have big plans for her this coming weekend, so that her stubborn scutes will now shed, getting rid of the white spots (which I hope is just some mineral deposits from hard water and NOT fungus) and getting a new layer of scutes is of course more beneficial to her.

I am still not happy with the way her shell is forming. I know she had some raised scutes, but she’s stubborn. If I could only force her to bask I would be content. But every night after I come home from work I wasn’t able to see any signs of her basking or going up the ATBA. Maybe I should invest in a motion-activated camera or the kind that record when movement is detected. Maybe my mind would be eased when I know that at least she’s getting some rays, even though artificial, during the day.

Also, I was able to clean the tank of Dumbork. I removed the water, cleaned the tubes, replaced the sponge and rinsed the ceramic rings. I also managed to scrape off the deposits on the sides of the tank at the waterline. I let the water settle in at first so that the beneficial bacteria will have time to colonize in the tank, providing low ammonia, nitrite and nitrate readings.

I wanted to create a paper on proper care and feeding of turtles. Right now I’m trying to contact some herpetologists in the county and I wanted to ask for their opinions and general advice. Next week I am going to provide an outline on the contents of the paper. The paper I have in mind is not an academic one — I do not have enough credentials in herpetology, or even enough experience in turtle-keeping to start with a formal project, but what I wanted was to create a primer if sorts so that fellow turtle keepers would be able to grasp the importance of maintaining a regular care for turtles that are kept as pets.

And since this is a blog about turtle, here’s a picture of one.

 

What is this on my arm?

What is this on my arm?

NBI Online Clearance under 3 Hours!

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The main premise is this: You have already applied at the online NBI Clearance Registration, available at their website http://nbi.njis-ph.com/. Just fill out the form, double check all data, and then submit the application. You will be given a registration code, and you can have two options:

  1. Print the Application Form containing the QR code and the Registration Number, or
  2. Save the HTML file if you want to print it later
  • If the website is down, try again and do not give up easily
  • Once you’ve submitted your application, go to the NBI Main immediately the morning after

Requirements:

  • Application Form
  • 2 Valid Ids
  • Php 115.00 for Local Employment

In order to get your Clearance in just under 3, including Travel Time, here are the steps:

A. Do not try to go the NBI Offices near you. Go straight ahead to the NBI Main Clearance Center Building, located at UN Avenue, Manila. 

Directions:

1. MRT3 [North Ave to Taft] – LRT1 [Roosevelt to Baclaran]

  • Board MRT Train bound to Taft, get off at Taft Avenue.
  • Go the Connecting Bridge to Doroteo Jose, and take the LRT Line 1 Train.
  • Get off at UN Avenue.
  • Walk across street (Landmark is the intersection. Nearby stores are KFC and Jollibee).

2. MRT2 [Santolan to Recto] – LRT1 [Roosevelt to Baclaran]

  • Board MRT Train bound to recto, get off at Recto.
  • Go to the connecting bridge to Doroteo Jose, and take the LRT Line 1 Train.
  • Get off at UN Avenue.
  • Walk across street (Landmark is the intersection. Nearby stores are KFC and Jollibee).
  • The MRT2 [Santolan to Recto] Train is more commonly known as the Katipunan LRT Train, for those living near the Ateneo de Manila University, and the University of the Philippines.

B. Go straight inside the building. By-pass all lines, ignore the queue on the plastic chairs, do not line at the “Data Processing Section”. Proceed to the Ground Floor.

C. If a guard asks you, just mention that you’re an online applicant; he/she will direct you to the ground floor.

D. Fall in line for the payment. Usual fee for Local Employment is Php 115.00. Present the application form.

E. Proceed to the third floor, Biometric Section.

  1. Present the application form, receipt, and IDs.
  2. Double-check all data on the screen.
  3. Observe proper protocol in the Image capturing and the Fingerprint Biometrics.
  4. Remember to get your IDs back

F. If your application is “WITH HIT”, come back at a later date as stated.

G. If you application is “NO HIT”, proceed to the printing section.

  • Present application and receipt.
  • Get your clearance on top of the printer.

General tips:

  • Do not be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of people. Tell the guard that you are an online applicant, and he/she will direct you inside the building, on the ground floor.
  • Double-check all necessary requirements
  • Research the place before going. It’s best to know nearest road routes, bus terminals, and jeepney/tricycle stations.
  • Try to schedule your appointment during the middle of the week (No Mondays and Fridays).
  • Bring pens and envelopes.

Here is the list of Pros and Cons for applying at the NBI Main Clearance Station

Pro (NBI Main)

Con (Satellite offices e.g. QC Hall)

There is a separate queue for online applicants

Some satellite offices combine the Manual Applicants and the Online Applicants (the manual applicants have been at the area the night before)

There are 10 Counters for Biometric Data Processing

Coming from Quezon City, the NBI Main office is far

There are 7 Counters for Payment

 

Lines are moved swiftly, without hassle

 

The whole process is clear-cut. You won’t stay in a line for long

 

Place is air-conditioned

 

Printing Section is fast and prompt

 

Here is the timetable of the Day

Activity

Location

Time

Number of Hours/Minutes

Travel time from MRT3 to LRT1

Quezon Avenue Station to Taft Station

8:00 – 9:00am

1 Hour

Travel Time from LRT1 to NBI Main Office UN

Taft Station to UN Ave Station, NBI Main

9:00 – 9:30am

30 Minutes

Payment (Step 4)

Ground Floor, NBI Main

9:30 – 9:31 am

1 Minute

Queuing for Biometrics(Step 5)

3rd Floor, NBI Main

9:31 – 10:00am

29 Minutes

Printing

3rd Floor, NBI Main

10:00 – 10:02 am

2 Minutes

Travel Time from LRT1 to MRT2

Doroteo Jose Station to Recto Station

10:02 – 10:30am

28 Minutes

Travel Time from MRT 2 to UP/ADMU area

Recto Station to Katipunan Station

10:30 – 11:00

30 Minutes

Total Time:

 

8:00am to 11:00am

3 hours

Hope this helped. If you have more questions, visit http://www.nbi.gov.ph/announcement.html or call (02) 5238231. 

Plotting Evil?

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Minions. Just one word and you will immediately think of those cute, small, and silly yellow creatures from the Despicable Me movie. You will often wonder, what on earth are they talking about? What are they saying? You’ll even try to decipher their words — is there a hidden meaning behind it, or is just a string of consonants and vowels? With their hand gestures and their facial expressions, you can slightly tell the subject of their topic; and with their videos on YouTube, you won’t be able to resist playing their songs again and again ang again, to the point that you will have to download it as your message notification tone or your alarm ringing tone.

Well, that’s what happened to me. I find them so cute and irresistible that when I had the chance to see a Minion Speaker, I cannot keep my greedy hands off it. Thanks to my aunt who saw it first and gave it to me as a gift! And, of course, this post would not be complete without Dumbork – here are the two cutest creatures of my world!

Potato Naaaaa~

Potato Naaaaa~

 

Quick Update!

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It has been ages since my last post. I am sorry, the holiday rush got ahead of me.

 

Just some updates from Dumbork:

 

She’s still fun and quirky as ever. Sometimes we would get brief periods of sunshine, so there were some moments that she enjoyed basking under the sun. Hopefully her system will catch up since it has been so long since she basked for eight hours straight.

 

How are your pets? Let us know!

Chillin'

Chillin’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oh, and have you noticed the big spider behind Dumbork’s tank? Spidey says Hello!

Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Bureau

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This morning I had the chance to visit Wildlife, as part of a mini educational field trip of my cousin, Gabby. I was more psyched to see what animals are housed there, and yet kinda worried on their state. After all, these animals rightly belong to the wild and not on housed cages, but on the upside, there is a lot of workforce striving to take care of them, continue their species through breeding, and check their health every now and then to make sure they have no illness or diseases.

I was sad to see that there was just one small cage allotted for turtles, and not a whole lagoon or pond. The water is dirty, there’s not enough sunlight that can filter through the cage for optimum basking, and the poop of the birds that were housed in the same cage was not quickly removed. Some Malayan Box Turtles were lounging on the water, some Red-eared Sliders were walking from their basking place to a flat area near the cage.

 

Group Meeting!

Group Meeting!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There were many species of birds, from eagles to parrots to owls. There were two tigers but the cage is too far away. We saw a Burmese Python and a Yellow Snake. We also saw some porcupines, a bearcat, some baboons, and a medium – sized alligator.

Reminded me of Rio

Reminded me of Rio

 

Philippine Crocodile

Philippine Crocodile

 

Porcupines

Porcupines

 

Eagle

Eagle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We were not able to roam around the whole park, but the admission ticket was for the whole day.

Hopefully I will be armed and ready the next time I go there.

Some tips:

-Try to get there early, around 9:00 am. You will have the chance to see the feeding of some animals. Don’t give any food to animals though.

-Bring your own food, utensils, and water if you plan to stay there for a day.

-There are cottages and parking areas, but with a minimum fee. Entrance fees are: Php 5.00 for kids, Php 8.00 for adults.

-Wear comfortable clothes and sneakers/rubber shoes. Some areas are slippery.

Here are more pictures:

Bearded Dragon

Bearded Dragon

Baboon

Baboon

Another one of those colorful birds

Another one of those colorful birds

Entrance

My cousin Gabby with a shot of the lagoon

My cousin Gabby with a shot of the lagoon

MBTs and RESs

MBTs and RESs

Two tigers

Two tigers

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