Visayas Sea off limits to fishing for spawning season

Published November 12, 2019, 10:51 AM

by Rica Arevalo

By Minerva Newman

CEBU CITY – Starting November 15 this year until February 15, 2020, a portion of the Visayan Sea will be closed to fishing of certain pelagic species namely sardines and herrings to allow these fishes to flourish in number as the three-month period has been marked as the spawning season of these species.

Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (MANILA BULLETIN)
Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (MANILA BULLETIN)

The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR-7) in Central Visayas called on the various concerned stakeholders to participate actively in the three-month closed season fishing.

Among the coastal areas around the Visayan Sea are Bogo City and the towns of San Remegio, Daanbantayan, and Medellin. The Bantayan Island, comprising of the towns of Santa Fe, Bantayan, and Madridejos, lies within the sea.

BFAR-7 regional director Alfeo Piloton appealed to local officials and authorities to assist them in guarding the Visayan Sea in its anti-illegal fishing campaign.

He also asked commercial fishing vessel operators to comply with the policy and avoid encroaching on the portion where fishing of the pelagic species has been banned.

Piloton urged the local officials and the coastal communities to cooperate with the bureau in its effort to conserve and protect the existing marine species in the Visayan Sea. The Visayan Sea is one of the country’s largest fishing grounds surrounded by the islands of Cebu and Negros to the south; Masbate to the north; Panay to the west; and Leyte to the east, he added.

BFAR-7 has intensified its information drive this month in educating the fisherfolks on the salient provisions of the Fisheries Administrative Order 167-3 – the policy which establishes the annual closed season of the Visayan Sea, Piloton said.

The amended administrative order specifies the prohibitions that people should heed and the penalties that are imposed on anyone violating the policy. The bureau has been collaborating with the involved local government units to hold the information and education campaign and in enforcing the policy on the given period.

“People should know the significant intentions of implementing this policy because we are not only doing this in order to increase our current fishery production, but we are imposing this to conserve our marine resources to make sure that the future generation will benefit the same,” Piloton said.