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This blog is an amateur photographer's attempt to show how beautiful the world really is. He is drawn to the colors of nature like a moth to a candle light. What are showcased here are nature's grand display of colors at sunrise and sunset, beautiful beaches and off-the-beaten track locations in his beloved Philippines, waterfalls and some of nature's great sculptures, architectural gems, and other views from around SE Asia that he was fortunate to see at one point.

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June 17, 2011

gensan: tuna capital of the philippines

Tuna Weighed and Classified
tuna bounty

I'm sharing morning scenes at the Gensan fishport where the tuna bounty is unloaded and hauled, weighed, classified, and sold. Gensan is considered to be the Tuna Capital of the Philippines - processing tons of tuna daily, from yellowfin to skipjacks.

Tuna Lined up for Classification
tuna lined up for classification
This is definitely big business here. With a world class fish port (officially called General Santos Fishport Complex) capable of handling hundreds of boats daily, tons of tuna changes hands here. Some go straight to export, other to the tuna processing plants and canneries. Gensan has 7 of the 10 canneries in the country, generating thousands of jobs.

Gensan Fishport Morning Scene
man carrying an adult tuna
Of the variety of catch that reaches the fish port, more than 50% are tuna species. An adult yellowfin tuna can easily weigh 30-50 kg. All around the fish port you'll see men carrying these huge tuna.

Weighing Queue 2
weighing queue
Queue at the weighing station. Each tuna is weighed before it can be classified. These guys have been standing there for quite some time. Just imagine how heavy the load they are carrying.

Tuna Weighing
scale master
From the fishing boats, the tuna is brought to weighing stations. Usually, every boat owner has his/her own weighing station.

Tuna Fishermen 2
deep sea catchers
These are the folks who make it happen. They are away for weeks and go to fishing groups as far as the borders of Indonesia and Palau. Before they leave they usually borrow money from the financier/boat owner and leave it with their families. If they get lucky they'll have sufficient haul to cover their debts when they get back. If not, they'll try again on the next fishing expedition. According to some fishermen, its getting difficult to catch tuna and they have to get farther out. Some have even got caught illegally fishing in Indonesian fishing grounds.

Tuna Haul - Juvenile Tuna
the haul
Close to 50 boats arrive daily to unload their catch weighing several tons. The best of the catch of course goes to the export market, while the local market gets the class C.

Trimming Usable Meat from Gills
nothing is wasted
Meat is trimmed from the gills and are sold in the local market. There was a time when tuna tail, "panga" (jaw), and innards are sold very cheap or just given way as freebies.Nowadays everything is maximized for profit.

Check out this flickr album for more photos.
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sheng said...

Never been to the fish port for this daily morning activity. I will have to do this soon!

bertN said...

I wish I knew about this when I was in the area on field assignment. I would have enjoyed hanging out and checking all the fishing related activities. Sayang!

Admin/Author said...

Nice documentary bro!

Jenn said...

I love how you documented this fishport in black and white. The port being so busy, it defocuses on the inessentials and made me notice the actual activity more. Love this post. :-)

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