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SHELLFISH HARVEST, CONSUMPTION OK

3 towns in Pangasinan, Davao Occidental now red tide-free

/ 05:00 AM May 23, 2019

The coastal waters of Bolinao and Anda towns in Pangasinan province and Santa Maria town in Davao Occidental province are now free from paralytic shellfish poison (PSP), or red tide toxin, according to the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR).

In its May 21 advisory, the BFAR office in Ilocos region lifted the red tide alerts it issued on April 26 and May 3 in Bolinao and Anda.

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“Based on the result of the confirmatory testing conducted by the BFAR national fisheries laboratory division in Manila, shellfish samples collected (in the areas) were [tested] negative for PSP,” said Lilibeth Signey, BFAR regional officer.

Harvesting and selling of shellfish from these areas are now allowed, she said.

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Red tide toxins had been detected in the waters off the two towns since April, triggering warnings against the gathering, sale and consumption of all types of shellfish, such as oysters, mussels and alamang (krill).

Filter feeders

As filter feeders, shellfish absorb the toxins generated by red tide, or the high concentration of algal bloom. When eaten, the toxins can cause numbing of the mouth, dizziness, headache, abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhea.

As of the first week of May, laboratory results from the BFAR and local governments showed that the bays of San Pedro in Western Samar, Lianga in Surigao del Sur, Balite in Mati City, Davao Oriental, and the coastal waters of Dauis and Tagbilaran City in Bohol were still positive for PSP beyond the regulatory limit.

—Yolanda Sotelo and Karl Ocampo

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TAGS: BFAR, Pangasinan red tide, Red tide alert
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