Eating fish is safe

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Eating fish is safe

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As the shellfish ban continues at the Tagbilaran Bay, authorities are saying fish, when prepared right, can be eaten.

What the ban is strongly implemented in is for  shellfish and other bottom feeders like sea urchins, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) shares to people who think that eating fish is also dangerous especially with the red tide scare in Tagbilaran City Bay.

The scare has harshly affected vendors who could not sell fish with the on-going ban on gathering, eating and marketing shellfish.

In fact, local officials in Tagbilaran City, Dauis and Panglao have been giving relief goods to affected fishermen and their families as well as vendors to help them get up past the tide.

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The ban, the BFAR said continues until the presence of paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) caused by pyridinium bahamense of the compressum variety causing the algal bloom could be confirmed out of the subject sea waters in Tagbilaran Bay.

According to Leo Bongalos, Bohol BFAR acting chief, the pyridinium dinoflagellates settle most of the time at the bottom of the seas and are the planktons mostly eaten by stationary bivalves, shellfish and echinoderms like sea urchins.

Because of this, fish eating the planktons in the seaweeds or corals may ingest the red-tide causing planktons but these should be confined to the entrails or the internal organs and the gills.

“Fish, as long as you wash them in clean running water, you take out the gills and the internal organs, they should be safe to eat,” Bongalos assured.

For crustaceans like crabs, he said people must discard the butter and the gills, and the meat should be safe.

These toxins are not destroyed by cooking, so it might be good to make sure the entrails are out and eating them raw is risky, BFAR said. (rac/PIA-7/Bohol)

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