6 fish breeding sites in Lingayen Gulf installed

DAGUPAN CITY – The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) in Region 1 and the local government of Dagupan installed at least six fish aggregating devices called “payaos” in the Lingayen Gulf, particularly along the area of Barangay Pugaro on Wednesday in a bid to help small fisher folks increase their catch and income.

These are a livelihood assistance to the small fisher folks which the residents of Barangay Pugaro, installed themselves in the spirit of “bayanihan” with the help of personnel of the City Agriculture Office and BFAR.

“This is another significant day for our fisher folks in the city as this will help them save more time in looking for fish to catch without going far into the middle of the sea thus spending more money for their gasoline,”said City Agriculture Officer Emma J. Molina.

The “payaos” were submerged in about six to seven feet deep and each is about three to four kilometers away from the shoreline of Pugaro.

“We choose Pugaro because this area will soon be a tourist spot and we would like to show to the people that we are serious in protecting our sea especially against dynamite fishing. Furthermore, we are assured that our fisher folks here will keep the ‘payaos’ safe from getting lost in the sea,” said Molina.

Pugaro, according to BFAR, is the breeding place of some high-value fish like lapu-lapu and talakitok.

It is expected that the “payao”, which will serve as an artificial reef for the fish and made of coconut leaves and ropes, will soon be the breeding area of fish after only about two to three weeks.

Two more of the “payaos” were also placed about eight to 10 kilometers away from the shoreline.

With the “payaos” in place, it is expected that the fisher folks in the area need not hunt fish along San Fabian and Lingayen area or go further into the middle of the sea anymore.

Pugaro Barangay Chairman Nestor Victorio disclosed that about 70 to 80 percent of Pugaro residents depend on the bounties of the sea for livelihood, saying “that is why we are thankful to the city government for all the assistance being shared to our fisher folks here,” he said.

Through the initiative of Mayor Belen T. Fernandez, the small fisher folks in the barangay have been provided with “kalokor”, a net tied to a boat pulled by up to 10 people, which up to this date has been a big help to them.

“We have around 50 members here and most of them are happy and satisfied with the income that they are generating from the “kalokor”,” added Victorio.

At present, the fishermen are earning at least 10-20 thousand pesos from their catch using the “kalokor” PNA – northboundasia.com