Daily Decay (29th May 2018)

Daily Decay (29th May 2018): Unidentified Rabbitfish (Siganus sp.) @ Pasir Ris

This was one of the many casualties of yet another fish mass mortality event that was triggered by a harmful algal bloom in the eastern Straits of Johor in February and March 2015.

Daily Decay (18th February 2018)

Daily Decay (18th February 2018): Unidentified Rabbitfish (Siganus sp.) @ Pasir Ris

This was one of the many casualties of a fish mass death in late February and March 2015, caused by a harmful algal bloom in the eastern Straits of Johor.

Daily Decay (11th January 2018)

Daily Decay (11th January 2018): Unidentified Rabbitfish (Siganus sp.) @ Pasir Ris

The remains of numerous fishes were found on the ground below the trees that were occupied by a colony of nesting Grey Herons (Ardea cinerea). It’s likely that these had been dropped by the Herons.

Philippines: Dagupan illegal fishpens exist—mayor

ByJaime G. Aquino, 26th August 2016;

Dagupan City Mayor Belen Fernandez admitted the existence of illegal fish pens in some villages but belied the claim of some fishpen operators that fish kills are rampant in the area.

Fernandez clarified that the number has been reduced to less than 100 after she ordered the demolition of 508 illegal fish pens covering an estimated 7.8 hectares from July 2013 up to the present.

City Agriculturist Emma Molina told The Manila Times that illegal fish pens had been rampant in Dagupan before Fernandez’ term and caused pollution.

Molina said the removal of the fish pens has prevented at least 1.5 million bags of feeds and residuals from polluting the city’s rivers.

She added that Dagupan City has not experienced Milkfish (bangus) (Chanos chanos) kills since 2014.

The city, however, had dealt with lapu-lapu (Grouper) (SubF. Epinephelinae) and malaga (Rabbitfish) (Siganus sp.) fish kills because of silted water during rainy season.

City Agriculture Office records showed the last known bangus fishkill in Dagupan City happened in 2006.

The city government has enlisted experts for clear rivers of pollutants.

Fernandez and Molina said illegal fishpen operations exist in the rivers spanning the villages of Pugaro, Carael, Calmay, Bonuan and Lucao.

Fernandez said she recently met with fish pen owners, who assured her that they will dismantle their structures after harvesting the fishes.

She added that she told them that she will order the dismantling of the fish pens if they fail to deliver on their promise.

A group of fishpond owners and fisherfolk have decried operations of illegal fish pen and fish cages that cause river pollution and siltation resulting in “massive” fish kills.

Alfredo Dawana, chairman of the Fishpond Owners Operators and Fisherfolk Association of Dagupan City Inc. said that as of August 20 this year, lapu-lapu and malaga fishes cultured in their fishponds estimated at more than P30 million were lost to polluted water.

Meanwhile, Molina dismissed as absurd the claim of some fishpond operators that up to P30-million worth of fish died because of polluted rivers.

She said if this were true, it would have been akin to a biblical event where dead fishes are seen floating all over.

Source: The Manila Times

Philippines: Dagupan illegal fishpens exist—mayor

Philippines: Polluted river causes Dagupan fish kills

By Jaime G. Aquino, 20th August 2016;

A group of fishpond owners and fisherfolk here decried the operation of illegal fishpen and fishcages that cause river pollution and siltation resulting in massive fish kills.

Alfredo Dawana, chairman of the Fishpond Owners Operators and Fisherfolk Association of Dagupan City, Inc. (FOOFADCI) said that as of August 20 this year, Lapu-lapu (Grouper) (SubF. Epinephelinae) and Malaga (Rabbitfish) (Siganus sp.) fishes cultured in their fishponds estimated at more than P30million were lost to the polluted water.

The group blamed the fish kill to illegal fish cages and fishpens on the river traversing the villages of Bonuan, Pugaro, Salapingao, Carael and Calmay.

“The fishkills in our ponds will not happen if the water in our river is not silted and polluted because of illegal fishcages and fishpens,” Dawana said.

He explained that the primary cause of the pollution and siltation is the waste from Milkfish (Chanos chanos) and feeds used by the illegal fishpen operators.

Dawana said 40 percent of feeds poured on the fishpens and fish cages are wasted and only 60 percent are consumed by the milkfish, according to a study of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR). The wasted feeds then create pollution and siltation.

He said more than 300 fishpens and 200 fishcages occupy the river.

Eduardo Maramba, FOOFADCI president, said the BFAR regional office has ordered the city government to conduct an investigation on the reported illegal operations of fishpen owners but no inquiry was held because majority of the operators and owners are politicians and wealthy businessmen in the province.

The group also sent several letters to the city government in 2010 and 2014 recommending the demolition and removal of the illegal fishpens and fishcages but no action was also taken.

Maramba said their group will submit resolutions to Environment Secretary Gina Lopez and Agriculture Secretary Manny Pinol for investigation and demolition of the illegal river structures.

The group cited Lopez’s order on the ongoing clearing operation and removal of fishcages and fishpens on Laguna de Bay saying that if the secretary can do that in Laguna, she can do it also in Dagupan City.

They said small time producers like their group will benefit from the demolition of illegal fishpens because all of their ponds are connected to the river.

Source: The Manila Times

Philippines: Polluted river causes Dagupan fish kills

Hundreds of dead fish have washed up on Ta Kuan beach in Rayong, where fishermen have rejected official explanations that the deaths resulted from a naturally occurring plankton bloom.
Photo: Ban Paknam small-scale fishermen’s group

Thailand: Alarm over Rayong fish deaths
19th March 2016;

Fishermen and activists in this eastern province want an investigation into the exact cause of mass fish deaths, which authorities insist are part of a natural phenomenon that occurs every year.

However, some local people suspect waste discharged from factories at the Map Ta Phut industrial estate could be linked to the thousands of dead fish that have washed up on Ta Kuan beach.

“In all my 60 years I’ve never seen such massive fish deaths,” said Lamom Boonyong, chairman of the Ban Paknam small-scale fishermen’s group. “Most of the dead fish are species that are quite resilient. Among them are pla salit hin (Rabbitfish) (Siganus sp.) and pla singto (Lionfish) (Pterois sp.).

"We’re sceptical about the cause of these marine life deaths. We question why only fish at Ta Kuan beach are dying. If it’s a natural phenomenon as claimed, more fish living along the (Rayong) coast must have died.”

The fishermen and representatives of activist groups met on Friday with Vitoon Uthim, deputy governor of the Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand (IEAT) at Map Ta Phut to call for an investigation.

Mr Lamom said the deaths occurred between March 13 and 16 and the dead fish had a combined weight of more than 2,000 kilogrammes.

Earlier, authorities said a plankton bloom was thought to be one of the causes. Supawat Kanadireklarp, director of the Marine and Coastal Resources Research and Development Center, said a plankton bloom can deprive the surrounding water of oxygen as the microscopic organisms die off and decay in large numbers.

Mr Supawat made the remark on March 16 as he led officials of the state agency to the beach to collect plankton and sea water samples for testing

Penchome Sae-Tang, director of the Ecological Alert and Recovery Thailand Foundation, urged authorities to disclose the names of factories that released waste into the Pradu Bay area off Ta Kuan beach in order to clear up doubts over the cause of the fish deaths.

Arpa Wangkiart, assistant dean of the Department of Environmental Engineering at Rangsit University, said the fish deaths were just the tip of the iceberg when it came to pollution at Map Ta Phut, and this was not the first incident. Similar incidents had occurred in the Map Ta Phut area in the past five or six years, she said.

She said authorities needed to take a deeper look into the causes and should not keep saying that a plankton bloom was the likely cause. Finding out what factors led to plankton booms in the first place might shed light on whether the operations of industries in the area played a role, she added.

Mr Vitoon of the IEAT insisted the fish deaths were a natural phenomenon and that factories at Map Ta Phut limited waste discharges to the amounts set by law. The quality of water at the industrial estate had been checked around the clock, he added.

Source: Bangkok Post

Thailand: Mass fish deaths likely result of plankton bloom

By Apinya Wipatayotin, 17th March 2016;

A plankton bloom is thought to be one of the causes behind the mass of dead fish that has washed up on Ta Kuan beach in Rayong, authorities said yesterday.

Supawat Kanadireklarp, director of state agency Eastern Marine and Coastal Resources, led officials yesterday to the beach near the Map Ta Phut industrial estate to collect plankton and sea water samples for testing.

“We will take around one week to complete our laboratory tests to determine whether a plankton bloom is one of the causes of the thousands of dead fish found washed up on this beach. It might have been caused by other factors as well,” said Mr Supawat.

Fishermen on Tuesday reported to local authorities that the dead fish had washed ashore along the beach and told them they still didn’t know the real cause of the death of so many fish.

They first found the dead fish on Monday.

Some fishermen said it was a normal occurrence every year, though this year many more appear to have died than last.

Most of the dead fish were identified as Rabbitfish (Siganus sp.), locally known as pla salit hin.

It is the fifth year in a row the fishermen say they have witnessed mass fish deaths.

Mr Supawat cited plankton bloom as one of the likely causes because the natural phenomenon can deprive the environment of oxygen which the plankton consumes for reproduction.

Meanwhile, a senior official from the 13th Regional Environment Office based in Chon Buri said an initial examination found dissolved oxygen and pH levels were normal.

Authorities need to conduct further tests to determine the cause.

They also collected water samples to check for heavy metals and other toxic materials that could lead to such a large amount of dead fish, a senior official said.

Penchome Sae-Tang, director of Ecological Alert and Recovery Thailand, said it was hard to believe that a plankton bloom was to blame.

Ms Penchome said water from the Chak Mak canal that leads from the industrial estate to the sea was an unusual dark colour.

She said her team will collect water samples from the canal to help determine whether the water is polluted and if it is linked to the deaths of marine life.

However, an initial inspection of water in the canal found it was normal.

Officials will conduct further tests, Map Ta Phut Industrial Port chief Chamrus Nenthong said yesterday.

It is too soon to conclude the fish died due to poisoning from waste water, he said.

Source: Bangkok Post

Thailand: Mass fish deaths likely result of plankton bloom

Thailand: Fishermen seek probe into large number of dead fish
17th March 2016;

Fishermen in Rayong’s Muang district are calling on the authorities to find out why a large number of fish were found dead at Ta Kuan Beach-Pradu Bay area on Tuesday, though they believe it could be blamed on rising sea temperatures, which usually happens at this time of the year.

They also found that some sort of black powder had blackened parts of the beach and also darkened and muddied seawater near the shore.

Fisherman Anuchit Khonsri said he believed the massive fish deaths stemmed from this year’s hotter-than-usual sea temperature. He also said the number of fish was high possibly because Ta Kuan Beach had become a conservation zone, with fishing boats banned from entry and the building of artificial reefs to “house” the fish.

Fishermen’s inquiry at related agencies was met with the response that they had to wait for test results after Rayong natural resource and environment experts Arunee Eapawich and Apipong Satthapong had collected samples at the scene on Tuesday.

Source: The Nation

Some of the fishes in the foreground are identifiable as Rabbitfishes (Siganus sp.).

Fishes dying at Pasir Ris?
By Ria Tan, 22nd February 2015;

I heard the water was not quite right at Pasir Ris. So I had a quick look there yesterday.

I saw white powdery insoluble stuff deposited at most recent mid-tide line. Dead fishes of various kinds large and small every 20 steps or so. More below about why it is important for human health, to find out what is killing the fishes.

I saw dead fishes of various kinds large and small, wild and farmed, every 20 steps or so. Thanks to IDs provided by friends on my early Facebook post, here’s some tentative IDs.

Read More

Source: Wild Shores of Singapore

Dead fishes found by divers near Koh Racha Yai.
Photos: Joe Blasy

Thailand: Phuket mystery: Autopsies yield no results for reef fish deaths
By Chutharat Plerin, 15th October 2014;

Autopsy results of dead fish collected at Koh Racha Yai off the southern coast of Phuket have yielded no clues as to why scores of reef fish are being found dead in the area (story here).

“We have yet to determine the cause of death. Experts conducted autopsies, but the results were inconclusive,” Phuket Marine Biological Center (PMBC) Director Ukkrit Satapoomin told the Phuket Gazette yesterday.

“Also, we checked the water conditions thinking that perhaps an influx of cold, less-oxygenated water transferred with more oxygenated water in the reef areas. However, that was not the case”

The other possibility is humans, Mr Ukkrit said.

“We have contacted people within our network and asked them to keep an eye out for any possible illegal fishing that might have caused the deaths. At this point, however, we do not want to make any unsubstantiated allegations,“ he explained.

“I have also contacted the Phuket Office of the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) for additional ideas on what could be done to prevent the deaths from continuing.”

After the reports concerning the dead fish off Koh Racha Yai, reports of dozens of dead fish found along Nai Harn Beach surfaced.

“We cannot do this alone. People must not be afraid to contact us if they are able to document illegal fishing,” said Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) Region 5 Chief Tanet Munnoy.

“I am available 24-7, so call me on my mobile if you witness fishermen fishing in restricted areas or using illegal fishing practices. My number is 081 636-8099.”

Source: Phuket Gazette

Tentative identifications of the fish species pictured:

  1. Viper Moray Eel (Enchelynassa canina)
  2. Yellowfin Goatfish (Mulloidichthys vanicolensis)
  3. Checkered Snapper (Lutjanus decussatus)
  4. Streaked Rabbitfish (Siganus javus)
  5. Striped Eeltail Catfish (Plotosus lineatus)
  6. Unknown
  7. Yellowfin Goatfish (Mulloidichthys vanicolensis)
  8. Streaked Rabbitfish (Siganus javus)
  9. Streaked Rabbitfish (Siganus javus)
  10. Striped Eeltail Catfish (Plotosus lineatus)