18 areas in PH hit by red tide

18 areas in PH hit by red tide

A shellfish ban is up in 18 areas all over the country after their waters were found to be contaminated with red tide toxins, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) reported.

The red tide-infested areas included the coastal waters in the following areas: Sual in Pangasinan; Pampanga; Bataan (Mariveles, Limay, Orion, Pilar, Balanga, Hermosa, Orani, Abucay and Samal); Puerto Princesa Bay in Palawan; Dauis and Tagbilaran City in Bohol, as well as Irong-irong, San Pedro, and Silanga bays in Western Samar.

Cancabato Bay, Tacloban City in Leyte was also reported positive for red tide toxin.

All kinds of shellfish and krill-like prawns from these red tide-infested areas must not be harvested, sold or eaten, the BFAR said.

The term “red tide” is used to describe the algal bloom phenomenon which results in the discoloration of coastal waters because of the high concentration of toxic and nontoxic algae. The waters may turn yellow, brown, blue or green, depending on the organisms involved, which can be fatal.

The high algal biomass can cause human illnesses which could be debilitating or fatal.—KARL R. OCAMPO