BFAR chief urges tilapia, shrimp growers to observe new protocol

LIKE PROTOCOL VS. COVID

THE Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Center chief urges tilapia and shrimp growers to strictly observe proactive biosecurity measures in their hatcheries to avert possible virus contamination and prevent losses to the industry.

Dr. Westly Rosario, BFAR-National Integrated Fish Technology Development Center head in Dagupan City said health protocols like social distancing, foot baths, chlorine baths for vehicles and other best practices have been developed to protect their molobicus tilapia hatchery and shrimp school in their sprawling compound in Barangay Bonuan Binloc this city.

He warned of the spread of diseases like the White Spot Syndrome Virus and Acute Hepatopancreatic Necrosis Disease/ Early Mortality Syndrome and the Tilapia Lake Virus that threaten the shrimp and tilapia culture.

To prevent an “epidemic”, BFAR has adopted strict protocols restricting presence of buyers in the hatchery including disinfection of vehicles entering the premises of hatchery.

“This is to ensure that the visitor is not a virus carrier,” he said.

He said even birds can also carry white spot syndrome virus for shrimps and it has been necessary to install bird-scare made of plastic strings stretched on top of the pond.

“Those engaged in hatchery must also have mass testing,” he said.

He said these and more best practices can be also adopted in some tilapia and shrimp hatcheries.

When transporting shrimp fry to other areas like in Mindoro, he said he had also experienced getting travel documents that these are free from any diseases. (PhilStar Wire Service/ECV)

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