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Baguio City, DA-BFAR release 1,500 fingerlings; fish transfer from Wright Park to Burnham starts

FINGERLINGS RELEASED. Department of Agriculture – Bureau of Fishers and Aquatic Resources and city officials release 1,500 red tilapia fingerlings last September 13 as part of the celebration of the 59th Fish Conservation Week. With the release, fishing enthusiasts will have more fish to catch in three months time. Neil Clark Ongchangco

After two fishing competitions and the almost everyday fishing activity at the Burnham Lake that has caused reduction to the fish population at one of the city’s most iconic places, fishers could look forward to more fish to catch in the next several months.

This after the city and Department of Agriculture officials released 1,500 fingerlings of red tilapia Wednesday at the Burnham Lake.

From the silvery tilapia that fishers have come to know after the city survived the bleakest two year period in its more than century of existence, they now look forward to catching the red variety that has excited Rafael Serrano.

“We just released red tilapias at the Burnham Lake,” an excited Serrano told this writer Wednesday.

“It’s pretty exciting as we look forward to another fishing competition before the end of the year,” added the retired engineer from the United States, who was afflicted with Covid-19 in early 2020 resulting to a record breaking 45 days stay in the hospital.

Serrano joined DA – Bureau of Fishery and Aquatics Resources – Cordillera and city officials in releasing the fingerlings as part of the 59th Fish Conservation Week observed that started on that day until Friday.

Serrano, DA-BFAR for Cordillera director Lilibeth Signey, Regional Fisheries Training and Fisherfold Coordinating Division (RFTFCD) Chief Lois Juen Fermin, Regional Fisheries Management Regulations and Enforcement Division OIC Dennis F. De Vera, Benguet Provincial Fisheries Office representative Riza A. Pulac, City Environment and Parks Management Office head Rhenan Diwas of CEPMO and City Veterinary and Agriculture Office representatives were either on board a boat in releasing the fingerlings.

Last September 9, Serrano started transferring carps from the Wright Park Reflection Mirror pool wherein 60 fishes were moved to the Burnham Lake.

He said that he has been tasked in making the transfer as the city will soon start rehabilitation works at the pool facing the Mansion House wherein fountains will be installed.

“More fishes in the lake, more to be fished,” said Serrano, who was appointed special action officer in recreational sports here by mayor Benjamin Magalong last June in a special administrative order. He was also the first person given a special permit at the lake which is now being done to cater to other fishing enthusiast as a way to reduce stress for locals burdened by the Covid-19 lockdowns.

Serrano is hoping to see the fingerlings fully grown by December when the third fishing tournament will be staged. The December competition will be bigger that will include team competitions with teams coming from the neighboring provinces like Benguet and La Union.

Serrano made the announcement after the successful staging of the second competition last Baguio Day and the awards made last Monday during the flag ceremony at the Baguio city hall grounds and led by Magalong.

The Monday ceremony saw Clemen Encarnacion receive his trophy and PhP5,000 cash prize, Regie Lim his trophy and PhP3,000 purse and PhP2,000 and trophy for Jackson Abion. The prizes and trophies were donated by Rolando Rongo, mayor Magalong, Susan Lasiter, Bernadette Yeban, Virgie Guico and CEPMO head lawyer Diwas. Pigeon Lobien

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