BFAR assures Davao Oriental consumers that fish remains safe to eat

FOLLOWING the devastations wrought by typhoon Pablo in both upland and coastal communities in Davao Oriental, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources director Atty. Asis G. Perez allayed fears of local residents that fish caught in the area are not safe for consumption.

Perez said that fish, especially the marine fishes caught along the shores of Davao do not feed on decaying matters. “Ang mga isda tulad ng galunggong, tamban, matang-baka, skipjack at iba pang isda na nahuhuli sa inyong lugar ay kumakain ng mga plankton, mga halamang dagat at maging ng maliliit na isda,” (Fishes like round scad, sardines,big-eyed scad, skipjack and other fishes caught in the area feed on planktons, aquatic plants and even small fishes), he stressed.

He added that the likelihood for other aquatic organisms considered as scavengers or detritus feeders (those that feed on decaying matters) to feed on human cadaver in the area is very nil because of the strong water current. In fact, many of the dead bodies were recovered in areas many kilometers away from the province.

Also, the strong current and big waves characterizing the fishing grounds surrounding Davao Oriental are mostly due to its deep waters as these are in the Pacific Ocean .

Meanwhile, BFAR has organized a motor caravan that will provide relief assistance to affected fisherfolk families in the area. A total of 7 newly-acquired vehicles of the agency will travel from Manila to Davao del Norte beginning today and is expected to reach Davao City by Thursday.

Perez said that the BFAR relief caravan will also drop by other regional offices in Regions 5, 8 and 13 to fetch whatever goods had been collected from donations in those areas.

The caravan took advantage of the delivery of the said vehicles in the different regional offices in Mindanao where these will be stationed, Perez said.

The BFAR had suspended its annual Christmas celebration and agreed to use the funds earmarked for the same to purchase relief goods for distribution to affected families.

In addition, the motor caravan, dubbed as “Balik Sigla at Saya ng Pasko, Alay ng BFAR sa Pamilyang Mangingisda na Apektado ng Bagyong Pablo” will also provide livelihood assistance such as fishing gears. Some BFAR personnel will also be present to provide technical assistance to fishing communities.

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