DUE TO CONVERSION OF FISHPONDS
DEVELOPEMENT and economic progress always comes with a price.
The rush of fishpond owners to take advantage of development in Dagupan City has alarmed the Bureau of Fisheries and Natural Resources (BFAR) who noted the backfilling of many fishponds.
Dr. Westly Rosario, chief of the National Integrated Fisheries Technology Development Center (NIFTDC), a research arm of the BFAR located in Bonuan Binloc, warned of far lesser production of bangus in the city’s fishponds if more fishponds are converted to commercial land.
“Dati nang maliit ang produksyon ng bangus sa Dagupan, lalong lumiit pa because of the backfilling of fishpond,” said Rosario.
He said that if the trend cannot be stopped, landowners and government must make it sure that the materials dredged from the silted river are the ones used for the backfill of fishponds to compensate for the loss of fishponds.
Rosario said it is the only way to improve and increase the production of remaining fishponds.
He said that based on the reports of barangay chairmen, the Pantal River is already very shallow because of siltation.
Rosario noted that areas devoted for fishponds in Binmaley are already more than double the areas being used for bangus production in Dagupan.
Because of this, Binmaley now produces more bangus tonnage than Dagupan that claims it is the Bangus Capital of the World.
Compared to bangus production 30 years ago when the city was teeming with fishponds, the city’s production today has diminished greatly because fishponds were converted into residential and commercial sites. (Leonardo Micua)
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