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Beltfishing Expertise in Santa Ana Cagayan

We discovered ourselves on the shores of Diora-Zinungan in Cagayan Valley on the break of daybreak. Boats had been already lined-up on the seaside awaiting to take us to sea. The coastal city had been practising beltfishing for greater than twenty years and it has turn into one in every of their principal supply of livelihood. Division of Tourism Area 2 lately spearheaded a program the place vacationer can expertise their distinctive method of fishing. And we’re right here to strive our hand on their method of fishing.

Kuya Wilfredo showing us the kariti.
Kuya Wilfredo displaying us the kariti.
The bow like bait base
The bow like bait base

The Kariti Evolution

Kuya Wilfredo, the lead for his or her fisherman’s group in Diora-Zinungan began the briefing about our exercise. He confirmed a set of contraptions they used for fishing. The primary one was the kariti, a manually-powered wheel pulley impressed by the hydraulic pulleys utilized by the Taiwanese fishermen. It really seems like a bicycle crank which Wilfredo admitted had been first utilized in its earlier designs again in 2000. Initially utilizing wooden however after just a few trial and errors and quite a few redesign, they now use these metal wheels during the last decade.

A a bow-shaped like bait with three hooks are connected to the nylon chords. These baits are particularly designed for beltfishes. The kariti are connected to both the bow or stern. I need to admit that it seems a bit crude however nonetheless, efficient. Beltfishing with this kariti is kind of a resourceful method of fishing with restricted cash or sources accessible.

Getting ready to head out to sea. Kariti attached to the bow and stern of the boat.
On the point of head out to sea. Kariti connected to the bow and stern of the boat.

Out to Sea

Over twenty years of venturing the waters from 2 to twenty nautical miles or past from the mainland of Santa Ana, Cagayan, the fishermen of Diora-Zinungan realized from expertise the intricacies of beltfishing. No fish finder gadgets used right here. As an alternative, they studied the character and behavior of beltfishes through the years. They realized that beltfishes normally feed from early morning and sparingly the remainder of the day. They yield extra catch early morning. Additionally they seen they normally linger on the common depth of 80 fathoms (140 meters).

Beltfishing Santa Ana Cagayan
Kuya Wilfredo displaying off a beltfish, regionally known as “bulung-unas”

The Fickle Fish

Even with this widespread information of the beltfish habits and attainable feeding areas readily available, they have to admit that the beltfish could be elusive at occasions. Beltfish are elongated fish generally referred to as the Largehead Hairtails widespread in tropical waters. Regionally, they’re known as as “bulung-unas” or ribbonfish within the Cagayan area.

Preparing strips of galungong as bait
Getting ready strips of galungong as bait
baits are ready
baits are prepared

Not like different fishes, after they feed on baits (normally strips of galungong or beltfish), they pull it downward and never aspect to aspect. Therefore the 3-hook bow-like bait design works as they’ll catch three fishes concurrently with out getting entangled. Nevertheless, additionally they seen their distinctive behaviour of simply taking small bites on the bait. And after they really feel prefer it, they don’t chew in any respect, even for the entire day. This we had skilled first hand.

Whereas our different companions had resounding cheers at their boats with their catches, our boat nonetheless yielded none. It didn’t assist that we got here in late on the feeding grounds since we needed to help one other boat which had a failed engine. By the point we arrived on the, the faculties of fish could have feasted on the opposite boats. To not point out, the ocean circumstances like currents and climate can have an effect on fishing.

Waiting to bite
Ready to chew
Observing movement and tautness for activity
Observing motion and tautness for exercise
Adjusting weights of the bait of needed depending on the strength of the currents
Adjusting weights of the bait of wanted relying on the energy of the currents

Neighborhood Involvement

After greater than two hours at sea, our boat didn’t catch any. However we’re joyful lots from our group had been in a position to take dwelling some catch. The beltfishing expertise doesn’t finish there nonetheless. Whereas the lads (and the vacationer) go fishing, the ladies of the group are chargeable for cooking a portion of the catch. Guests availing of the beltfishing expertise additionally get to style their catch. Two thirds of their catch might be cooked and served for a meal whereas the remainder could be purchased from the fishermen to be distributed to the group.

Some of the group's catch
A number of the group’s catch
A beltfish on a hook
A beltfish on a hook

The Beltfishing Expertise is designed to be a sustainable program that may profit each the vacationer and the group. Admittedly, in keeping with Kuya Wilfredo, the beltfish inhabitants is dwindling. Earlier than, they’ll simply catch 60-80 kilos a day, as of late 30 kilos can be a blessing already.

Being a part of the guiding expertise would give them further revenue and in addition assist re-populate the beltfish inhabitants by fishing much less.

Out at sea for beltfishing experience
Out at sea for beltfishing expertise

Beltfishing Expertise

In fact this system remains to be younger and there are nonetheless room for enhancements. As with all experiential excursions like this, guides play a pivotal position. I’m unsure if each boatmen had been as conversant as our information, Kuya Wilfredo, who’s used to talking. I heard some boatmen had been quiet. So coaching fishermen to information ought to be an important a part of this system.

Our cooked beltfish catch
Our cooked beltfish catch
Enjoying our food at the beach
Having fun with our meals on the seaside

And in addition with excursions coping with nature like recognizing whale sharks or birds within the wild, there are probabilities there gained’t be any sightings so expectations ought to be tempered down.

Nonetheless for any vacationer wishing to expertise one thing native and distinctive, this beltfishing expertise is worth it.

To e-book for a Beltfishing Expertise in Santa Ana, Cagayan, contact

Setting out to sea at sunsrise
Getting down to sea at sunsrise

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