Can’t sleep … These two fishermen in Parang came back from Mambulao Bay about three hours ago after a long night of chasing fish in April 2012. But instead of hitting the sleeping mat (banig) for a much-needed rest, they remained up, tending to their fishing gear, which they will haul off back to the sea the following night. Meanwhile, their wives had taken off with their husbands’ catch – a total of 15kg or so – which they had shared equally, to peddle around the neighborhood of Parang. Fish is in demand despite their price going a bit higher these days, and it will sell in no time at all. This means it won’t be long when the fishwives would be home with lunch and dinner foodstuff they would buy from the wet market in poblacion. Over the years, their daily catch has decreased in volume, thus affecting their income. But their families still get by somehow and survive for another day.
Still a good business … This fisherman’s wife, whose family lives by the beach of Parang, is sorting out charcoal just delivered by a farmer from Tumbaga, a sitio in San Rafael, Mambulao, in April 2012. Charcoal has remained in demand as it is more affordable than kerosene and this has been another source of meager income for her, apart from the cash she makes from selling fish caught by her husband. A non-governmental organization (NGO) currently involved in a reforestation project in Larap learned from the local folks that charcoal-making has been the main cause of the destruction of the community mangrove forests. They said, there’s no other source of income for the local people except to chop down mangrove trees for firewood, which they sell at the community market for P250 a sack. Normally, to fill a sack, it would require chunks of charcoal from at least six young trees with trunks measuring at least 4 inches in diameter. – MWBuzzpics by ALFREDO P HERNANDEZ