‘Red tide’ warning hoisted in four coastal provinces


The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) on Tuesday said it found “red tide” toxin in the coastal waters of four provinces.

In its latest Shellfish Bulletin, the attached agency of the Department of Agriculture also warned the public against consuming seafood from areas that are still positive for toxic red tide.

BFAR said shellfish collected from the coastal waters of Dauis and Tagbilaran City in Bohol; San Pedro Bay in Samar; Dumanquillas Bay in Zamboanga del Sur; and Lianga Bay in Surigao del Sur remain positive for paralytic shellfish poison.

“All types of shellfish and Acetes sp. or alamang gathered from the areas shown above are not safe for human consumption,” the bureau added.

“Fish, squids, shrimps, and crabs are safe for human consumption provided that they are fresh and washed thoroughly, and internal organs such as gills and intestines are removed before cooking,” BFAR said.

Eating shellfish products with red tide can cause paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP), which can cause death.

Early symptoms of PSP include tingling of the lips and tongue, which may begin within minutes of eating poisonous shellfish or may take an hour or two to develop.

Depending on the amount of toxin a person has ingested, symptoms may progress to tingling of fingers and toes and then loss of control of arms and legs, followed by difficulty in breathing.

If a person consumes enough poison, the muscles of the chest and abdomen become paralyzed.

Death can result in as little as two hours, as muscles used for breathing become paralyzed.