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Algae Monitoring Protects Oregon Recreational Shellfish Gatherers–For Now

On July 6th, the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) announced the closure of recreational mussel harvesting for over 120 miles of Oregon Coast from Tillamook Head south to Heceta Head due to elevated levels of paralytic shellfish toxins (PST).  The closure includes mussels found on the […]

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Puget Sound Toxic Algae Forecast Moves Closer to Reality

On May 31, investigators funded by the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science released the second annual map of Alexandrium catenella cysts in bottom sediments throughout Puget Sound in the state of Washington. They found that the highest cyst concentrations at Bellingham Bay in the north and Quartermaster Harbor in the south, similar to 2011. This year’s cyst abundance in the […]

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Research Promotes Method to Slow the Spread of Encrusting Invasive Species

Dredging channels and cleaning boat hulls or fishing gear in or near established Didemnum colonies can create fragments of these invasive organisms that survive in the water column up to four weeks, disperse long distances, and even reproduce before resettling, possibly in new areas, according to NOAA research. The article suggests that cleaning equipment on land and reducing bottom disturbance […]

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New Test Identifies Low Level Toxin Exposure to Protect Human Health

A NCCOS Ecology and Oceanography of Harmful Algal Blooms (ECOHAB)-funded study at the University of Washington and the NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service laboratory in Seattle has developed a unique and convenient way to detect very low levels of exposure to the harmful algal toxin domoic acid in laboratory zebrafish and in wild California Sea lions. […]

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NOAA and Partner Scientists Discover Way to Detect Low-level Exposure to Seafood Toxin in marine animals

NOAA scientists and their colleagues have discovered a biological marker in the blood of laboratory zebrafish and marine mammals that shows when they have been repeatedly exposed to low levels of domoic acid, which is potentially toxic at high levels. While little is known about how low-level exposure to domoic acid affects marine animals or […]

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Pacific Northwest HAB Project Helps Predict Japanese Tsunami Debris Paths

Where, how and why harmful algal blooms occur off coastal Washington and Oregon and predicting their arrival on coastal beaches is the goal of the NCCOS sponsored harmful algal bloom (HAB) project “PNWTOX” (Pacific Northwest Toxins).   A PNWTOX model developed for HABs is being put to use to help forecast the movement of the debris field […]

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Battling ‘Red Tide,’ Scientists Map Toxic Algae To Prevent Shellfish Poisoning : The Salt : NPR

Public health officials have their hands full keeping your clam chowder and raw oysters safe. That’s due, in part, to red tides. Red tides happen nearly every year as coastal waters warm, killing fish and poisoning shellfish along U.S. coasts. They’re not actually tides — they’re huge blooms of naturally-occurring toxic algae. If people eat […]

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