Fish cage operators in Ilocos Norte told to harvest early

LAOAG CITY — Fish cage operators in Ilocos Norte have been warned of a possible fish kill due to the effect of El Niño, which is likely to occur with the onset of summer.

Lilibeth Signey, regional director of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) in Region 1, said Wednesday that as part of the El Niño mitigation plan for the fisheries sector, it is better for fish cage operators to partially harvest their stocks to avoid a possible fish kill.

Signey said El Niño may have a negative impact on aquaculture since high temperatures hasten the decay of organic matter and promote plankton bloom that could result in a fish kill.

“We are advising our fish cage operators to harvest those marketable size already to prevent further losses and to command a better price,” she said in an interview.

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) has announced that weak El Niño conditions are already present in the tropical Pacific.

“Climate monitoring and analyses indicate that the unusually warm sea surface which started since November 2018 is expected to become a full-blown El Niño,” the weather bureau said in an advisory.

Representatives from the BFAR Regional Field Office based in San Fernando City, La Union led by Signey held a quarterly fishery industry forum at the Hotel Asuncion in this city to present various lending programsm which fisher folks may want to avail of to improve their livelihood. 
Leilanie Adriano / PNA –