MASBATE CITY — The Bicol regional office of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) in partnership with the city government here marked on June 30 the first harvest from the Mariculture Park Project in Masbate Bay, with the theme, “Produktong Mariculture: Una nga Pag-ani.”
BFAR-Bicol Assistant Regional Director Marjurie Grutas and Vice-Mayor Allan Cos led the harvest of marine fishes from BFAR’s demonstration fish cage installed at the mariculture park measuring 10×10 meters. Three kinds of fishes were harvested, namely: grouper (lapu-lapu), siganid (danggit) and milkfish (bangus) with a total weight of 300 kilos.
The celebration opened with a motorcade from the BFAR Provincial Fisheries Office in the city to Masbate Fish Port, which was participated by BFAR personnel, city, and barangay officials. The participants then boarded the two “palutaw-lutaw” vessels of the city in the fish port in Barangay Kinamaligan that transported them to the fish park.
A live band serenaded them as they cruise for 30 minutes to the mariculture park where a short program and the fish harvest transpired.
In gratitude of the efforts of the partners of BFAR in this project, certificates of appreciation were awarded to the city government of Masbate for the implementation of the mariculture project and to Engr. Welmer A. Lalaguna for being the pioneer investor who is also scheduled to harvest his stock of bangus soon.
Grutas challenged the city officials to spearhead the establishment of more fish cages in the mariculture park and to sustain the initial success that the BFAR had demonstrated.
In the afternoon of the same day, a lecture-demo on bangus deboning and cooking of value-added fishery products was conducted by BFAR personnel to members of women’s organization and restaurant owners in Masbate. The harvested bangus from the mariculture were used as main ingredient on the different bangus recipes.
The 200-hectare mariculture park in Masbate Bay is intended to provide new livelihood opportunities and additional income for the Masbateños.