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PIA Press Release

Sorsogon Bay declared free from red tide toxin

by Bennie A. Recebido

Sorsogon Province (March 22) -- For more than three years now, shellfish enthusiasts famished from consumption of different kind of shellfish particularly of green mussel (locally known as tahong) harvested from Sorsogon Bay, has now a reason to party following result that the bay is finally free from the deadly red tide toxin.

Latest laboratory results of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) and Local Government Units (LGUs) in its Shellfish Bulletin No. 06 dated March 17, 2010, says shellfish collected at Sorsogon Bay in Sorsogon City, this province, is now free from the toxic red tide.

Gil A. Adora, officer-in-charge of BFAR laboratory in Diliman Quezon City said that with the negative results obtained from the water and shellfish meat samples at Mandaon and Milagros waters in Masbate, Juag Lagoon in Matnog, Sorsogon, which was declared negative of harmful algal bloom or red tide in February this year, and now, Sorsogon Bay in Sorsogon City, coastal waters of Bicol region is generally safe from the noxious red tide toxin.

He, however, despite of the declaration, reminded the public to remain on guard advising them to buy only fresh marine products and wash (them) thoroughly, removing internal organs before cooking.

"Particularly that the country is currently suffering from El Niņo phenomenon, there is a high possibility of re-occurrence of harmful algal bloom or red tide to previously contaminated coastal waters, so the public has to take necessary precautions and be kept updated of the latest results of BFAR's regular monitoring activities," he added.

Significantly, coastal waters in some 19 provinces in the country are free from said toxin. However, shellfish collected at Dumanquillas Bay in Zamboanga del Sur; Bislig Bay in Bislig City, Surigao del Sur and Murcielagos Bay in Zamboanga del Norte and Misamis Occidental are still positive for paralytic shellfish poison that is beyond the regulatory limit.

"Furthermore, Matarinao Bay in Eastern Samar is now positive for red tide toxin," says BFAR Bulletin.

Meanwhile, with the lifting of shellfish ban in Sorsogon Bay, locals here expect a remarkable recovery of shellfish industry which was hurt for quite a long time now displacing thousands of populace dependent on the industry and impairing economic growth of five towns surrounding Sorsogon Bay. (PIA Sorsogon) [top]

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