NAGA CITY: The preservation and conservation of exotic fish sinarapan, the world’s smallest commercial fish, get a boost from a Senate bill that establishes “Sinarapan Sanctuary (SS)” in the provinces of CamSur Sur and Albay.
With Senators Francis Escudero, Pia Cayetano, and Franklin Drilon as authors, Senate Bill No 3264, now on second reading in the Senate, seeks to place SS as protected area under the category of wildlife sanctuary, complete with institutional and enforcement mechanisms.
It named four small lakes categorized as SS with all lands comprising them fall under the classification of “National Park as provided for in the Philippine Constitution".
Once passed into “Sinarapan Sanctuary (SS) Act of 2012,’’ the Lakes Manapao (2.7ha), Makuao (1.03ha) and Katugday (2.43ha) in Buhi town in Camarines Sur, and Lake Danao (8.3 ha) in Malinao town in Albay will be protected to ensure the conservation of sinarapan, Mistichthys luzonensis, an endemic fish species found in the surrounding areas of Mt. Asog.
A little more than 2mm, Sinarapan, once numerous in Lake Buhi, started disappearing in the 1980s with the advent of motorized fishing to capture them for commercial exploitation.
Acting on the problem of sinarapan depletion, the municipal government of Buhi enforced prohibition of capture of sinarapan in Lake Buhi and established SS in Lakes Manapao and Katugday, where sinarapan are raised for restocking into Lake Buhi.
With the Senate bill, the local initiative of the municipal government to preserve and conserve sinarapan has to become a state policy with the involvement of national government entities. – Bicol Mail