BFAR Bicol issues red tide warning in Sorsogon, Masbate bays

Published December 7, 2020, 11:08 AM

by Niño Luces

LEGAZPI CITY, Albay – The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resource (BFAR) regional office here has issued a warning on Sunday, against the gathering, selling and eating of shellfish harvested from Sorsogon Bay and Mandaon Bay in Masbate province due to red tide.

BFAR-Bicol Spokesperson Nonie Enolval said that, based on the latest sampling from Sorsogon Bay, it was found that the area was positive for harmful algal bloom or known as red tide.

“We earnestly advise fishers not to gather and sell shellfishes such as green mussel (tahong), carpet shell (baduy), pen shell (baloko), blood cockle (piyong and takal), oyster (talaba) and other shellfishes (surusalapi, kagot, tikhan, bukawel, ugpan, punaw, etc.) in the area, Enolva said.

Enolva also disclosed that some residents of Milagros town in Masbate suffered food poisoning, with one person dying after reportedly eating shellfish.

“Some residents in Milagros, Masbate suffered food poisoning and led to eventual demise of one. As of posting, we are still awaiting for the official report from our Provincial Fisheries Office. The BFAR 5 thru regional director Nelson Bien issued local advisories for Sorsogon Bay and the Municipal Waters of Mandaon, Masbate,” she said.

Enolva also advised that eating of “alamang” gathered from these areas could be dangerous.

Eating red tide contaminated shellfishes may cause paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) that may lead to severe and life-threatening neurological effects.