Monday, April 28, 2008


Fishing the water of Manila Bay along Roxas Boulevard is nothing more than a game that tests one's patience. According to some of these Baywalk fishermen I've spoken to, the fish that takes the bait comes too far in between, and nothing much to be proud of.

The small sapsap (ponyfish) is what's usually caught in this water, while the bigger kanduli takes the bait mostly during the late afternoon and early evening hours.

Kanduli is a relative of the hito (catfish), and traditionally associated with the popular local dish sinigang sa miso. The biggest kanduli caught in this area measured no more than six inches. Nonetheless, it's considered a prized catch.

Some of these Baywalk fishermen also admit to releasing the fish they've caught because of the polluted water where they come from. The others, on the other hand, take home their catch of the day -- to clean and grill as pulutan (hor d'oerves) for their evening's drinking bout with friends.

Despite the less than auspicious fishing condition in this Baywalk area, still
many come fishing in this part of the city -- for the relaxing aspect of it, as well as for the enchanting sunset that awaits them later that evening.

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posted by Señor Enrique at 8:51 AM


Blogger reyd said...

Namimingwit din kami dito sa northwest during summertime, tapos casino sa gabi. hahaha... Just like the anglers that you talked to, malamang they do that for the thrill and the excitement that comes with it. May permit permit pa kasi dito and sometimes meron limit ang catch. Pag maliit nahuli namin, binabalik namin. But there was a time na isa lang nahuli namin till' late afternoon, so we just went to Safeway grocery and buy some cooked crabs. :D
Ganda naman ng mga fishing poles nila, dati, kawayan lang kami, katalo na.
Thanks for sharing the images of our fun loving anglers along Manila Bay.

April 28, 2008 11:29 AM  

Blogger luna miranda said...

I didn’t know that Kanduli comes from the sea…I thought it’s a fresh-water fish. People who love to fish are very patient and probably love to mull over ideas. With the wind on your hair, the smell of the sea and the beautiful Manila Bay sunset are enough reasons to go out and try your luck at fishing.:D

April 28, 2008 1:39 PM  

Blogger nutart said...

once, my husband and I were able to stroll along Baywalk...and we saw these anglers nga. We really wondered if they really ever caught fish at the smelly waters of the bay and so we watched for a while. My husband was just amazed that there was some who actually caught fish! Well, the only time I was able to experience fishing with a line was in Norway. The lakes were so pristine but the fish (when we were there) just didn't bite although we were able to catch three trouts and a a whole four days! I have realized that fishes are just as intelligent as their captors ;-) kaya I believe in aboriginal or very natural rituals like talking to the natural world to allow a catch for eating...
But then, there seem to be people who are just naturals in catching fish...even in Manila Bay. Thanks, Eric for all these slices of Manila life!

April 28, 2008 6:55 PM  

Anonymous Mandaragat said...

Exactly Senor! Fishing is not only rewarding, pang-alis pa ng stress.

April 28, 2008 7:18 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

These are serious "anglers," Reyd; thus, their serious-looking gear :)

Talking to these guys, and now hearing your experiences, led me to conclude that many get into fishing for the relaxing aspect of it :)

April 28, 2008 7:49 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

The way you described it, Luna, don't be surprised if one of these days you see me fishing at Manila Bay :)

April 28, 2008 7:50 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Your comment reminds me of a movie I saw on HBO about a couple of months ago, Bernadette. It was about a drifter who was so good in catching the biggest fish in the county. Can't remember the name of it though.

Know what? Whenever I go out shooting (pictures, that is), I always make it a point to first ask the universe for guidance. It has become a personal ritual, actually :)

April 28, 2008 7:54 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Okay, Mandaragat. You got me sold. I'll take up fishing in the very near future :)

April 28, 2008 7:56 PM  

Anonymous bertN said...

The last pic show the tiny fishes (sapsap)caught by the guy. I wonder what kind of bait and what size hook he used. The catch are just too small!

Manila Bay is too polluted now and probably too overfished in the past that it takes the fun out of fishing. I hope the air will not become so smoggy it will hide the beautiful sunset...the only remaining excuse to fish the bay.

April 28, 2008 9:51 PM  

Blogger Panaderos said...

Nice to know that quite a number of our countrymen are into this hobby. If little boats were a bit more affordable to the average folk, I have no doubt that a number of these guys will go and get one. It's quite a relaxing activity too and I myself won't mind indulging in it every once in a while. :)

April 28, 2008 10:20 PM  

Anonymous bing said...

i am so afraid for them. di ba sila natatakot sa kind of fish na makukuha nila mula sa maruming dagat na ito?

April 28, 2008 10:47 PM  

Anonymous kyels said...

The fishes caught were so tiny. Anyway, I've always wanted to try fishing. I know it requires patience and I'd love to test how long I can take standing there waiting for a fish to grab onto my bait. Haha!


April 28, 2008 11:41 PM  

Anonymous sardonicnell said...

this photo reminds me of my dad, he loves fishing kasi. and we use to do that together with my bro when we were kids. wish i could have that priceless moment with dad again. love the photo, eric ;)

April 29, 2008 6:00 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Thought at firts those were used as bait, bertN. Turned out, they were the catch ... hehehe.

I think for the most part, it is the relaxation and the sunset later on that draw these guys to cast their bait into this water of Manila Bay :)

April 29, 2008 6:27 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

I'm sure there's quite plenty of this activity out in the provinces, Panaderos.

But then again, in Zambales and Pampanga, many rivers were destroyed by "lahar" from the Mt. Pintubo eruption. Laguna de Bay, on the other hand, is very polluted. However, I bet there are still abundant supply of fishes from cleaner water in many parts of the country.

April 29, 2008 6:31 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

I think the authorities have started removing the fish cages in Laguna de bay, Bing, because of the polluted water. And yes, the water of Manila Bay is also just as polluted.

Pero, alam mo na, ang ibang kabayan natin walang pakialam basta may pulutan lang sila.

April 29, 2008 6:33 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

As said, Kyels, this is a waiting game. The more patience you have, the more chances you have on enjoying this hobby ... hehehe.

April 29, 2008 6:35 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Indeed, those were priceless moments, Nell. Perhaps, you can do the same with your nephews someday :)

Thanks, Nell!

April 29, 2008 6:36 AM  

Blogger BW said...

there seems to be no regulations on the size of fish that can be caught :)

Anyways, as they say, a bad fishing day ( none caught) is better than a good day at the office :) and I wholeheartedly agree.

April 29, 2008 9:47 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

That's a good one, BW. I like it :)

Nope, no such thing as fishing regulation along Baywalk. Those anglers are lucky to catch anything at all.

April 29, 2008 12:59 PM  

Blogger Sidney said...

Some go into fishing... others into photography! ;-)
But we can't eat our pictures ;-(

April 29, 2008 3:37 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

If one has the time, why not get into both hobbies, Sidney?

April 29, 2008 8:13 PM  

Blogger Alan Roberta said...


April 30, 2008 2:14 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

As said, Ala, if one has the time, this would be a relaxing hobby, indeed :)

April 30, 2008 7:46 PM  

Anonymous weedbreeder said...

I used to fish there. Even bought serious equipment for it. then my then girlfriend (now my wife) decided to tag along. Got her a better gear. And to my surprise she catches more fish than i do, but we release all the catch. too small and dirty to eat.

What I wanted to say is this is a relaxing activity for some. It's not about just catching the fish but the time spent waiting for the bite.

There are photography people, mountain climbing people, fitness people and there are fishing people. Kung saan ka masaya, dun ka.

March 03, 2009 1:52 PM  

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Life in Manila as observed by a former New Yorker who with a laptop and camera has reinvented himself as a storyteller. Winner of the PHILIPPINE BLOG AWARDS: Best Photo Blog in 2007 and three Best Single Post awards in 2008.


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