Red tide alarm up in Western Samar bay

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AFTER more than a month of being red tide-free, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) has raised the alarm anew after Irong-Irong Bay in Western Samar tested positive for paralytic shellfish poison.

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In its Shellfish Bulletin No.8-15, BFAR warned the public against catching and consuming shellfish from the coastal waters of Irong-Irong Bay, noting that the fishing grounds have a high concentration of paralytic shellfish poison beyond the regulatory limit.

BFAR, however, said that several species – including fish, shrimps and crabs – are safe to eat, provided they are fresh and thoroughly washed. Their internal organs – gills and intestines – must be removed before cooking.

Other major fishing areas of in the country, however, are not unaffected by the toxins, BFAR added.

The Philippines has been red tide-free for the past month, as favorable weather conditions prevailed.

Red tide occurs when algae rapidly increase in numbers to the extent that it dominates the local planktonic or benthic community. Blooms are caused by environmental conditions that promote explosive growth.

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