A red tide alert is now up along the coastal area of Barangay Wawa, Bani, Pangasinan as per an advisory issued recently by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) regional office.
BFAR Regional Director Nestor Domenden issued Regional Fishery Advisory 1 dated Jan. 30, 2012 to warn people in the Ilocos Region to refrain from eating shellfish gathered due to the infestation of paralytic shellfish toxin, or “red tide” toxin, in the coastal waters of Wawa, Bani.
The advisory advised the public to refrain from eating, gathering or harvesting, transporting and marketing shellfish coming from the coastal waters of Wawa, Bani until further notice.
The advisory stemmed from the results of red tide monitoring by BFAR on shellfish samples collected from coastal waters in the area which were found positive for red tide toxin that exceeded the regulatory limit.
Domenden, however, said that fish, squids, shrimps and crabs harvested from the area are safe for human consumption provided they are fresh and washed thoroughly and their internal organs such as gills and intestines removed before cooking.
He said that BFAR, in coordination with the local government units (LGUs), will continuously monitor the coastal waters of Wawa, Bani to find out if the red tide organism is still present in the water to safeguard the public health and to protect the fishery industry.
Aside from the coastal waters of Wawa, Bani, Pangasinan, the other coastal waters affected by red tide toxin are Dumanquillas Bay in Zamboanga del Sur; Masinloc Bay in Zambales; Murcielagos Bay in Zamboanga del Norte and Misamis Occidental, Bataan Coastal waters (Mariveles, Limay, Orion, Pilar, Balanga, Orani, Abucay and Samal).