By Anthony Giron, 27th September 2014;
Municipal officials here tagged Maalimango River as a dead tributary as its waters were found to contain a chemical deadly for fish and other marine life.
Mayor Jose “Nonong” Ricafrente Jr. declared the vital river dead as he said that initial finding of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) revealed that the cause of the Thursday fish kill in the estuary is “lack of oxygen and a still unknown chemical.”
In an interview, Ricafrente said that the finding was based on the initial laboratory analysis report that he obtained from the BFAR at 3 p.m. Friday.
With the finding, Ricafrente ordered the immediate river restriction as well as investigation on the incident.
“It’s dead (referring to the river), the fish and other marine species will not live in the river,” Ricafrente.
Maalimango River is a more than one-kilometer tributary stretch in Barangays Bagbag I and II, Tejero I and Ligtong I, II, III, IV. Old folk said that alimangos (mud or mangrove crabs) (Scylla sp.) once thrived in the river.
The river became a talk of the town when thousands of dead fully grown and small fish such as tilapia (Oreochromis sp.), banak, asubi (both vernacular names for mullet) (F. Mugilidae) and other marine species resurfaced along the river on sunrise of Thursday (Sept. 25).
A swarm of dead fish was first sighted near the mouth of Manila Bay in Bagbag. It was the first fish kill that was reported in the town.
Bantay-Bayan and barangay men hauled off at least one ton of dead fish from the river during the day and Friday. Ricafrente reported that river fish losses may run up to more than P1 million.
Source: Manila Bulletin