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Mar Pollut Bull. 2008;57(6-12):295-301. doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2008.03.028. Epub 2008 May 5.

Eutrophic waters, algal bloom and fish kill in fish farming areas in Bolinao, Pangasinan, Philippines.

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  • 1Marine Science Institute(1), University of the Philippines, Diliman, Quezon City 1101, Philippines.


The coastal waters of Bolinao, Pangasinan, Philippines experienced environmental changes over a 10-year period (1995-2005), the most significant effect of which was the major fish kill event in 2002 that coincided with the first reported Philippine bloom of a dinoflagellate Prorocentrum minimum. Days before the bloom, dissolved oxygen was < 2.0 mg/l in the waters that were stratified. These conditions may be linked to the uncontrolled proliferation of fish pens and cages to more than double the allowable limit of 544 units for Bolinao waters. Mariculture activities release organic matter from unconsumed feed and fecal material that accumulate in the water and sediments. In over 10 years, water quality conditions have become eutrophic with ammonia increasing by 56%, nitrite by 35%, nitrate by 90%, and phosphate by 67%. The addition of more fish pens and cages placed additional stress to this poorly flushed, shallow area that affected water quality due to changes in the water residence time.

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