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Investigating Diamondback Terrapin Die-Offs in New York

From late April into May 2015 hundreds of diamondback terrapin turtles (Malaclemys terrapin)  began dying and washing up on beaches in the western part of Long Island, New York. Simultaneously an on-going Alexandrium fundyense bloom occurred. Alexandrium produces a potent neurotoxin, saxitoxin, which is the cause of paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP). The terrapin tissues were […]

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Science Informs Vote to Protect Mid-Atlantic Deep-Sea Corals

On June 10, NCCOS’s cross-NOAA partnerships and investment in carrying out spatial analyses of deep-sea coral ecosystems informed a near-unanimous vote by the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC) to protect more than 38,000 square miles of seafloor, stretching from New York to Virginia, from bottom fishing activities. NCCOS played a lead role producing statistical models […]

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Water Quality Improvements Through Shellfish Aquaculture Highlighted in NOAA Science Seminar Series

A recent presentation highlighted a new NCCOS modeling study in Long Island Sound (LIS) and Great Bay Piscataqua Regional Estuaries (GBP) that focused on the water quality benefits of shellfish aquaculture. The presentation, “Eutrophication and Aquaculture; Shellfish can help the Bay!,”reported nitrogen removal estimates through cultivation of oysters equivalent to 1% of total nutrient inputs discharged […]

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NCCOS Works to Track and Eliminate Freshwater Algal Toxins

A new study has documented the fate of microcystins—the most common of the freshwater blue-green algae toxins—and the challenges for monitoring them. The study is part of a larger NCCOS-sponsored project whose goal is to identify bacteria capable of degrading microcystins and to develop an affordable and efficient water filtration system to house such microorganisms. Microcystins inhibit and […]

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Tenacity of Brown Tides Linked to Genetic Flexibility

The genetic flexibility of Aureococcus anophagefferens, the harmful alga responsible for “brown tides” off Long Island, allows it to thrive in conditions other algae cannot tolerate. NCCOS-sponsored scientists assessed this alga’s response to environmental stressors, such as low nutrients and low light, by looking at pieces of its RNA, which tell Aureococcus which proteins to […]

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Algal Toxins Pose Health Risk to Dogs

Harmful algal bloom (HAB) toxins, including microcystins, pose health threats and even death for dogs and other pets exposed to the contaminated water, explains a new educational brochure from the New York Sea Grant Program. The brochure, a product of a National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science sponsored research project in the Great Lakes, describes freshwater HABs and their […]

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Invasive Asian Carp Could Establish in Lake Erie with Little Effect to Native Fishery

A recent study found that if Asian carp establishes in Lake Erie, the native fisheries might not be significantly affected. Based on consultations with Great Lakes and fisheries specialists, the researchers estimated that Asian carp biomass could range from nearly zero to an even larger presence than the current walleye and yellow perch in Lake Erie. From […]

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Coastal Ocean Acidification: The Other Eutrophication Problem

Eutrophication, or increased nutrient loading to estuaries, causes algae to bloom and consequently coastal hypoxia (low oxygen waters) when the algal biomass decomposes. Often overlooked, eutrophication can also produce carbon dioxide, which leads to a lowering of seawater pH (or increasing acidity). A recent invited paper by scientists supported by NCCOS and the NOAA Ocean Acidification Program shows low […]

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