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Fish Stalls in Jagna Market Empty
« on: February 09, 2008, 12:11:17 PM »
Written by Joe Espiritu
Columnist
Bohol Sunday Post


The fish stalls in Jagna Market practically bare. The double whammy of gusty northeasterlies and moonlit nights contribute to the scarcity of local fish supply. The few pieces found are striped tuna and dogtooth tuna or bodlis and bangkulisan. The price is over a hundred pesos a kilo. Even the lowly round bodied scad locally known as tabudlos, galonggong or GG in Metro Manila is of that price level. Freshwater fishes like the bangos and tilapia are offered to the people who rely upon marine products for their protein needs. What Jagna needs is the entry of fish and fish products from all over Bohol.

Jagna municipal waters cannot supply fish and marine products to the Jagna demand. The reef strands of the more than ten kilometers of Jagna shoreline are over fished. In areas where there are no fish sanctuaries, fishermen from upland barangays using double nets, a combination of layers of large and fine meshed nets, take turns in operating, harvesting even trash fish.

Bangos fry catchers using sudsuds or hand pushed, floating triangular fry scoop nets, contributes to the destruction of fish fry. When the bangis fry is separated from the rest of the catch, the remainder is dumped on the sand instead of returning them to the sea. An ordinance sponsored by Kagawad Alberto Café, prohibiting the dumping of rejected fry was passed by the Sangguniang Bayan but it is more honored in breach rather than by enforcement.

However, even with careful fish conservation practices observed, the local, near shore fish supply cannot cope up with the Jagna market demand. Reef strands are too small to offer fishing grounds that could afford the fishermen decent living.

Pelagic near shore fishes like anchovies or bolinao no longer come to Jagna Sardines and its subspecies like the hawohawo, mangsi and tigi are gone. The lantern fish or gabon has disappeared decades ago.

Most of our fishermen became blue water fishers. Then, blue water fishing is not only seasonal but is also dependent upon good weather. The mainstay of deepwater fishing was the flying fish or bangsi. This fish, once abundant that its roe or bihod is washed ashore, is seldom bought outside Bohol. Indiscriminate and over fishing contributed to its scarcity.

Pelagic deep-sea fishes like the tunas, bonitos and mackerels are in trouble. Those fishes cannot stop moving if they are to live. With immovable gill flaps, seawater cannot flow through their gills if they stop. They will die of oxygen starvation if their blood rich dark flesh in their sides had not stored enough for short stops. .

Their constant motion needs a higher metabolism, which also generates excess heat. Those fishes need water temperatures in the vicinity of 25 to 27 degrees centigrade. Global warming might make them seek cooler waters away from Jagna waters.

Repealing the Law of Supply and Demand will be like repealing the Law of Gravity.

Impossible. The best we can do is encourage people to enter into backyard gardening, raising livestock like poultry, pigs, goats -m anything that moves that could be eaten. This is to wean the people away from dependency of fish and fish products. But this is easier said than done. Our people are not used to invest time money and effort to produce. They only harvest. Fishing is a form of harvesting. If fishing does not give them dividends, they tighten their belts and wait for better days.

Linkback: https://tubagbohol.mikeligalig.com/index.php?topic=9367.0
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Jagna was once a fish rich town

Started by Ligalig-Mike on Jagna - Bohol

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