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Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Seeks Advice on Harmful Algal Bloom Threat

Five NOAA National Marine Sanctuaries on the west coast are vulnerable to harmful algal blooms, including blooms of Pseudo-nitzschia, which at times produce domoic acid—a potent neurotoxin that can accumulate in many animals. Consumption of toxic prey leads to illness and death in a variety of birds and marine mammals and necessitates shellfish harvesting closures […]

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High-tech Armada Links Toxic Algal Blooms and Nutrients from Sewage off Southern California

Last month, NCCOS-funded scientists deployed two Environmental Sample Processors, two research vessels, five autonomous underwater vehicles, and five drifters in the ocean around San Pedro Bay, off Southern California, seeking signs of harmful algal blooms (HABs). Not long after deployment, this high-tech armada detected a large phytoplankton bloom that included the diatom Pseudo-nitzschia and its […]

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NOAA Teams with NIST to Transfer HAB Detection Methods to Portugal’s Marine Animal Rehabilitation Centre

NOAA’s harmful algal bloom Analytical Response Team has teamed with Hollings Marine Lab partner, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), to provide training for a NIST International Fellow on algal toxin detection in marine wildlife. Dr. Rute Costa of the Marine Animal Rehabilitation Centre in Figueira da Foz, Portugal, is nearing completion of this […]

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Gulf of Maine Red Tide Forecast Suggests Modest Bloom: Robotic Sensors Deployed to Confirm and Improve Future Predictions

A team of NOAA and academic researchers led by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) has issued a seasonal red tide forecast for the Gulf of Maine as part of a pilot program that expands NOAA harmful algal bloom (HAB) forecasting to this region. The forecast suggests a modest bloom for the upcoming 2014 season. […]

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Algal Community Study Advances Ciguatera Management in Pacific Islands Region

Populations of Gambierdiscus, the algae most often associated with ciguatera fish poisoning, have been found to have only low or moderate toxicity on the western coast of Marakei Island in the Republic of Kiribati—a section of the island considered a high-risk area for ciguatera for decades. This unexpected finding is part of a recent NCCOS-funded […]

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Underwater Robots Detect Toxic Algae off Southern California

Two autonomous underwater robots deployed in San Pedro Bay off southern California have detected the diatom Pseudo-nitzschia and its potent neurotoxin domoic acid. This may signal the initiation of a harmful algal bloom along the coast that could impact a variety of wildlife and fishery resources. The robots, known as Environmental Sample Processors, are essentially underwater, molecular […]

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Sentinel Site Alerts California Public to Toxic Shellfish

Routine sampling of marine mussels from a University of California sentinel site at the Santa Cruz Wharf prompted the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to issue a health advisory warning for domoic acid poisoning due to high levels of the toxin in shellfish samples. The April 4, 2014 advisory warned consumers not to eat recreationally […]

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NOAA Supports 2014 SeaPerch Challenge

NCCOS scientists provided scientific support in the 2014 SeaPerch Challenge by serving as judges in the Charleston, S.C. competition on April 9, 2014. SeaPerch is an innovative, underwater robotics program that equips teachers and students with the resources needed to build an underwater remotely operated vehicle (ROV). Students build the ROV from a kit of […]

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