Monday, January 15, 2018

BFAR: 25,000 bangus fingerling 
to bangus culture adopter POs

CALAPE, Bohol, January 11 (PIA)—A Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) facility here in Bohol has the capacity to give some 25,000 bangus fingerlings to fishermen’s and people’s organization (PO) intending to go into fish cage or fish pen bangus culture as a first time incentive. 

In another bid to upscale the local bangus production with pelagic fishes going to warmer waters in this cold climate thus drastically reducing local fish catch and pulling prices up, BFAR aqua-technologists dangle the viability of fish cultures.

Aqua-technologists Ma. Rocile Angela Josol and Jonaren Lafuente, stationed at the BFAR’s Central Visayas Multi-Species Nursery, Demonstration and Training Center (CVMSNDC) here at Bentig Calape said they have enough technology to bring down to communities that could drastically increase fish production. 

The regional center for the nursery of bangus, siganid, pompano, grouper and abalone clams, CVMSNDTC, now under their center chief Gamelba Dumadag, produces fingerlings for region’s requirements for top grade commercial fish for government and private fish culture across the region.

The facility also offers technical services to groups through technology transfers and demonstrations on technologies suitable for the fish, prawn or abalone cultures fishermen’s organizations are trying to adopt, explains Josol at the weekly Kapihan sa PIA. 

The facility however does not prioritize their services to private groups considering that their mandate is to assure supply of fish needed for communities and poverty alleviation. 

But for fishermen’s groups and people’s organizations near water and egging for fish cultures, CVMSNDTC has an irresistible package: up to 25,000 bangus fingerlings for requests coursed through the regional director. 

All they need to do is go to the provincial fisheries office at the BFAR near the NIA compound in Dao and the office would send technicians to see and inspect to see if the area is suitable for culture, according to the aqua-technologists.

There are specific depth requirements and there are specific measurements for the number of fish in the culture pen or cage, these are some of the things needed to be found out earlier, added Lafuente who has also done extensive research on fish culture technologies.

There are also programs for tilapia in rice paddies which the Department of Agriculture wittingly calls “palay-isdaan,” where tilapia is gown on rice paddies.

While they do not hatch the bangus, CVMSNDTC gets its bangus fry form the BFAR Central Bangus Hatchery in Lawis, Panggangan Island Calape. 

There, the fry are brought to the nursery where they are allowed to at least an inch so it can be sold to fish ponds and fish culture adoptors all over the region, or dispersed to communities who intend to adopt fish cultures in ponds, pens or cage, Josol added. 

But for first time fish pen and cage adopters, the incentive package can be availed, the release depending also on the size of the pond, cage or fish pen, the young Lafuente said.

The facility in Bentig also caters to organizations eyeing the culture of first class fish like siganid (kitong), pompano, grouper (pugapo), prawn and even abalone. 

Governor Edgar Chatto has relentlessly called for Boholanos to make use of the opportunity to go into backyard fisheries amidst what people believe as a severely low supply of fish over a huge demand.

This year opened with fish prices zooming out to 250 to 400 a kilo, and has not since gone down. 

BFAR Regional Director Allan L. Poquita in Ubay said the agency is tasked more on securing the supply of fish.

BFAR has been largely blamed for failing to control the rising prices of fish to exorbitant levels, a fact that BFAR has no technical control. 

BFAR is a technical agency, and our mandate is to make sure there is sufficient supply of fish, thus we are working with fisherfolks, Poquita said. 

But as to their pricing, it is beyond the monitoring tasks of BFAR. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)