BFAR to equip commercial fishing vessels with monitoring devices

Marje Pelayo   •   July 9, 2019   •   929

A Philippine fisherman watches a China Coast Guard vessel patrolling the disputed Scarborough Shoal, April 5, 2017. Picture taken April 5, 2017. REUTERS/Erik De Castro

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) will install monitoring devices to around 5,000 commercial fishing vessels in the country.

This is in line with the agency’s Integrated Marine Environment Monitoring System Project amounting to P2 billion.

Such monitoring devices will enable the agency to monitor the location of all fishing vessels every time they venture out to sea.

“The system will only tell you that the vessel is there and it will also tell you kung may incident or may accident na nangyari doon (if there is any incident or accident at sea,)” noted Sammy Malvas, BFAR’s Assistant Director for Admin services.

The installation will commence sometime during the last quarter of this year. – with inputs from Rey Pelayo

BFAR warns of shellfish poisoning in parts of Visayas, Mindanao

Marje Pelayo   •   August 20, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) warns residents in coastal towns of Visayas and Mindanao about the high toxicity levels in shellfish. 

Based on the latest laboratory results of BFAR and the local government units (LGUs), shellfish collected from coastal waters of the following areas are still positive for paralytic shellfish poison that is beyond the regulatory limit:

  • Bohol
    • Dauis
    • Tagbilaran City
  • Negros Oriental
    • Tambobo Bay
    • Siaton 
    • Bais Bay
    • Bais City 
  • Leyte
    • Cancabato Bay
    • Tacloban City 
  • Davao Oriental
    • Balite Bay
    • Mati City
  • Surigao del Sur
    • Lianga Bay

The agency reminds residents that “all types of shellfish and Acetes sp. or alamang gathered from these areas are not safe for human consumption.”

Fishkill in Laguna Lake not caused by a virus — BFAR

Marje Pelayo   •   June 23, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) Region 4A has reported that around 800 metric tons of fish died in Laguna Lake last week in the areas of Pililia and Binangonan, Rizal.

Region 4A Director Sammy Malvas clarified that the fish kill was due to the lowering of dissolved oxygen in the water and not because of any virus outbreak as some reports said.

“Kalimitan ang cause nyan ay iyong pabago-bagong weather condition natin. Halimbawa ay mainit sa araw tapos bandang hapon ay biglang bubuhos ang malakas na ulan, nagko-cause iyon ng pagbaba ng lebel ng dissolved oxygen, (Usually, the cause is the changing weather conditions. For example, the sun is up in the morning then in the afternoon, we have thunderstorms, that causes reduction in level of dissolved oxygen),” Malvas explained.

One of the viruses that can infect tilapya is the so-called ‘tilapia lake virus’ (TLV), a case of which was recorded three years ago in Bulacan.

There has been no recurrence of such incident so far according to Malvas, as they also conduct strict laboratory testing of fish seed samples before transporting them to other places.

“Nag-i-issue kasi tayo ng health certificate para doon sa transboundary movement ng mga buhay na semilya (We issue health certificates for transboundary movement of live fish seedlings),” Malvas said. 

The supply of tilapia at the Balintawak Market comes from Pampanga and Batangas and there has been no price increase. 

BFAR  assured that fish supplies in the market are safe to eat provided they are thoroughly cooked. MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)

BFAR warns of shellfish poisoning, red tide toxins in waters of Palawan, parts of Visayas

Marje Pelayo   •   February 11, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) has raised the alarm over consumption of shellfish and ‘alamang’ from the coastal waters of Palawan and several areas in the Visayas due to high level of red tide toxin.

Based on the latest laboratory results, the level of paralytic shellfish poison is beyond regulatory limit in the coastal waters of the following:

  • Puerto Princesa Bay (Palawan)
  • Puerto Princesa City (Palawan)
  • Dauis (Bohol)
  • Tagbilaran City (Bohol)
  • Irong-irong Bay (Western Samar)
  • Cancato Bay, Tacloban City (Leyte)
  • Lianga Bay (Surigao del Sur)

Meanwhile, high level of red tide toxin is present in the waters of:

  • Carigara Bay (Leyte)
  • San Pedro Bay (Western Samar)

“All types of shellfish and Acetes s. or alamang gathered from the areas stated above are NOT SAFE for human consumption,” the BFAR said in its advisory.

The agency added, however, that fish, squids, shrimps and crabs in the area are safe for human consumption provided that they are “fresh and washed thoroughly, and internal organs such as gills and intestines are removed before cooking.”

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