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Thousands of “Danggit” fish found dead on Zamboanga shores

A top official of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) in Zamboanga City on Wednesday (May 3) was "facing a blank wall" as to what happened to the school of spinefoot fish locally known as "danggit," found dead along the shores.

Pedling Munap, chief regulations officer of BFAR said these school of fish were found dead along the beach of  R.T. Lim Boulevard.

There were suspicions of a fish kill but the BFAR official immediately disregard this report as they were rumors only. The truth is, BFAR said, they are still investigating the incident by getting a water sample and do some laboratory tests. This is to stop suspicions from spreading further which may have caused panic among city residents.

“We are all surprised by this. We will have some specimen for laboratory testing to determine the cause of their death," the BFAR official told reporters on Wednesday.

Initial investigation made by BFAR has it that the dead Danggit were measured about 3 inches. He said this type of a fish usually thrives in seaweed farms as they needed more seaweeds for their consumption. 

The government official, however, could not ascertain where these school of fish came from, before they were found dead and washed along the shores in the city. Most of the coastal areas in the city, report said, are occupied by private seaweed farms.

He said BFAR could not identify yet where the schools of fish came from before they were washed ashore, since most of the coastal areas in Zamboanga City were surrounded by private seaweed farms.

Munap said the low dissolved level of oxygen might have caused the phenomenon as well as the dry spell. Since there was heavy downpor early last week this might have affected the healthy habitat of fish underwater.

Meanwhile, City Mayor Isabelle Salazar quickly advised city reisdents from swimming off the waters along the boulevard as well to refrain from consuming the dead fish as there maybe poison in their bodies. 

Joel Escolhttps://www.youtube.com/channel/UCK_sKdGFs0ewIh9R-iAskDg
Joel Calamba Escol is a journalist in the Philippines for more than 20 years. Currently, he is the Managing Editor of Mindanao Daily News, the biggest and most-widely read newspaper in Southern Philippines. He is also known as Noypi Vlogger in Youtube. You can follow him on the following social networking sites below.
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